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[HA.S.C. No. 114-37] 









APRIL 15, 2015 

94-748 WASHINGTON : 2015 

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Publishing Office 
Internet: Phone: toll free (866) 512-1800; DC area (202) 512-1800 
Fax: (202) 512-2104 Mail: Stop IDCC, Washington, DC 20402-0001 


J. RANDY FORBES, Virginia, Chairman 




DUNCAN HUNTER, California, Vice Chair 


PAUL COOK, California 



RYAN K. ZINKE, Montana 



JOE COURTNEY, Connecticut 
JAMES R. LANGEVIN, Rhode Island 
RICK LARSEN, Washington 
HENRY C. “HANK” JOHNSON, jR., Georgia 
SCOTT H. PETERS, California 
SETH MOULTON, Massachusetts 

David Sienicki, Professional Staff Member 
Phil MacNaughton, Professional Staff Member 
Katherine Rember, Clerk 





Courtney, Hon. Joe, a Representative from Connecticut, Ranking Member, 

Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces 3 

Forbes, Hon. J. Randy, a Representative from Virginia, Chairman, Subcom- 
mittee on Seapower and Projection Forces 1 


Clark, Bryan, Senior Fellow, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assess- 
ments 3 

McGrath, Bryan, Managing Director, The FerryBridge Group 6 


Prepared Statements: 

Clark, Bryan 31 

Courtney, Hon. Joe 29 

Forbes, Hon. J. Randy 27 

McGrath, Bryan 50 

Documents Submitted for the Record: 

[There were no Documents submitted.] 

Witness Responses to Questions Asked During the Hearing: 

[There were no Questions submitted during the hearing.] 

Questions Submitted by Members Post Hearing: 

[There were no Questions submitted post hearing.] 



House of Representatives, 

Committee on Armed Services, 
Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces, 

Washington, DC, Wednesday, April 15, 2015. 

The subcommittee met, pursuant to call, at 2:02 p.m., in room 
2212, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. J. Randy Forbes (chair- 
man of the subcommittee) presiding. 



Mr. Forbes. I would like to call this hearing to order. 

And before we get started, I want to welcome my newest member 
of both the full committee and the subcommittee, Mr. Russell from 
Oklahoma, who has had a very distinguished career in serving our 

And we are delighted to have you both on our full committee and 
on the subcommittee. Look forward to your input and help as we 
move forward with this markup and other things the subcommittee 
will be doing. 

Today the subcommittee meets to discuss the role of surface 
forces in presence, deterrence, and warfighting. I am particularly 
pleased to have two distinguished seapower expert witnesses to tes- 
tify before our subcommittee. 

Mr. Bryan Clark is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic 
and Budgetary Assessments, and Mr. Bryan McGrath is Managing 
Director at The FerryBridge Group. 

Thank you, both, for being here and testifying today. We always 
enjoy reading your material, and we are looking forward to hearing 
you today. 

This committee’s last hearing discussed the evolving maritime 
security report in the Navy’s recently released report, “A Coopera- 
tive Strategy for 21st Century Seapower.” Today we examine sur- 
face forces in this new environment and how we accomplish the 
transition from a defensive to an offensive surface force capable of 
operating and achieving objectives both independently and in co- 
operation with other forces. 

Looking at our naval surface forces today, we see a multitude of 
new capabilities are being integrated into the fleet. We are incor- 
porating better sensors, including an expanded air and missile de- 
fense radar that is 30 times better than current technologies, and 
a new digital electronic warfare capability to deter, detect, or to 
better detect, decoy, and defeat incoming missiles. 

( 1 ) 


We are continuing to expand our antisubmarine warfare capabili- 
ties, including the addition of multi-function towed array and a 
variable depth sonar on our small surface combatants that will be 
able to better track even the quietest of submarines. 

We are fielding new missiles to better pace the threats we face, 
including a long-range antiship missile and better short-range mis- 
sile capabilities resident in the enhanced Sea Sparrow missile. 

Although we face severe fiscal constraints in research and devel- 
opment, there are new technologies available that the Navy will 
shortly be able to integrate into existing platforms. 

Advances in technology, such as the electromagnetic rail gun and 
the laser weapons system, permit the integration of systems and 
promote the multi-functionality of systems. Instead of a multi-mil- 
lion-dollar missile, a single salvo from a rail gun will cost less than 
$50,000. These systems represent a great opportunity to fundamen- 
tally change the cost curves in our favor. 

In addition to harnessing our technological innovation, our Navy 
is exploring a new concept entitled “distributed lethality,” a concept 
that would disaggregate and better arm the surface fleet. Providing 
for a better tactical employment of our surface combatants by 
disaggregating surface combatants from a centralized carrier battle 
group may represent our best chance of creating a tactical force 

By complicating potential adversary’s ability to successfully tar- 
get future naval combatants, our Navy becomes more survivable 
and increases the probability that potential aggressors will decide 
to pass at future conflict. 

I continue to believe the most challenging capability or tactical 
problem that the Navy has to contend with does not reside within 
the Department nor is it posed by potential adversaries. I believe 
that the most pervasive and difficult problem that the United 
States Navy faces today is the will of this body to provide for our 
common defense and to not be lulled into a false sense of security. 

The idea of American exceptionalism is not idle words, but, rath- 
er, a unique American approach to our current challenges and fu- 
ture goals and objectives. We need to embrace the role of the 
United States and especially the role of the United States Navy 
and surface fleet, in particular, in maintaining and securing the 
global commons. 

As proponents of seapower, we know that our Nation’s viability 
and future is linked to the strength and health of our fleet. I just 
question what we are doing today to ensure our next generation is 
able to enjoy the same benefits of life and liberty that preceding 
generations have provided to us. I look forward to hearing Mr. 
Clark and Mr. McGrath’s insights on how the Navy can reach dis- 
tributed lethality amidst fiscal constraints. 

[The prepared statement of Mr. Forbes can be found in the Ap- 
pendix on page 27.] 

Mr. Forbes. And, with that, I would like to now turn to the 
ranking member of this subcommittee, Mr. Courtney, for any com- 
ments he may like to offer. 





Mr. Courtney. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

And thank you to hoth witnesses for your presence here today. 
Again, you have heen sort of frequent fliers around this building, 
and much appreciated. Because, you know, there is obviously a lot 
in the short term with a mark just a few days away, but, also, 
frankly, the longer view that I think you guys spend a lot of time 
thinking about and your experience and training, you know, really 
provides a very helpful guidance to all of us. 

I am not going to read my whole statement here, but just sort 
of reiterate what the chairman mentioned, is that the Cooperative 
Strategy for 21st Century Seapower, which was released and we 
had a hearing on a few days ago, again, sort of focused on the fact 
that our surface forces are critical to making that strategy work. 
It faces, in many respects, you know, almost unprecedented chal- 

The Under Secretary for Acquisition, Under Secretary Kendall, 
spoke yesterday at the Sea, Air, and Space Convention with a 
packed audience and made the comment that he thought that the 
sort of changing technology and capabilities out there are about as 
threatening as existed back at the time of World War I with the 
evolution of a lot of new platforms that people really hadn’t even 
gotten their heads around. So, you know, obviously, we really need 
to be focused on what you are here to talk about today. 

So, again, look forward to your testimony. 

And, Mr. Chair, I am just going to ask the rest of my remarks 
be entered for the record. 

Mr. Forbes. Without objection, they will be entered. 

[The prepared statement of Mr. Courtney can be found in the Ap- 
pendix on page 29.] 

Mr. Courtney. And I will yield back. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you, Mr. Courtney. 

And I know you served on a panel at that exposition. I know you 
represented us all very, very well. And I am sure that you men- 
tioned submarines at least once or twice in that panel. Not today, 
but thanks so much. 

Mr. Clark, it is my understanding you are going to start. 

And, as I mentioned to both of you, we will put your full written 
remarks in the record, but we look forward to any opening com- 
ments that either of you may have. 

So we will turn the floor over to you. 


Mr. Clark. Thank you, sir. Chairman Forbes and Ranking Mem- 
ber Courtney, thank you very much for inviting us to discuss the 
role of the surface Navy in presence, deterrence, and warfighting 
today. I am honored to be here and to appear with my friend Bryan 

This discussion is timely, as the U.S. Navy surface force is at a 
crossroads. At the beginning of this century, the Navy had planned 
to introduce a family of new warships, the CG(X) missile defense 


cruiser, the DD(X) land attack destroyer, and the sea control- 
focused littoral combat ship [LCS]. Now we look back and each of 
those ships is now either truncated or canceled, and we need a new 
family of surface ships to address the future of security environ- 

The environment in which those ships was introduced reflected 
kind of that post-Cold War security environment where the Navy 
supported power protection ashore and its dominance at sea was 

The new cruiser was designed to protect U.S. forces from missiles 
launched from land. The destroyer was designed to use stealth to 
approach close to shore and use its guns to attack targets on land. 
And the littoral combat ship was planned to be used to address 
coastal threats, like mines or diesel submarines and small boats. 

Today the security environment is much different. In particular, 
sea control can no longer be assumed and U.S. surface forces are 
going to have to expect to fight to gain and maintain access for the 
joint force in the future. Also, resources to address this challenge 
have and will continue to be constrained. 

So recognizing these trends, the Navy decided to end each of 
these programs that were involved in this new family of surface 
ships, but it now needs to come up with a set of new solutions that 
are going to address this future environment. 

That future environment is much different. Today sophisticated 
anti-access/area-denial capabilities continue to improve and pro- 
liferate, threatening U.S. freedom of action, and challenging the se- 
curity assurances it provides to its allies and partners. 

At the same time, instability is spreading through the action of 
revisionist states, such as Russia, China, and Iran, and there is 
also the failure of governments in the Middle East and Africa, 
which are increasing demands for U.S. forces to come in and help 
train and do security assistance with our allies and partners 
around the world. 

Fortunately, the Navy has some opportunities to address this set 
of challenges both with instability and anti-access capabilities. 

In the next year, it is going to finalize specifications for the 
Flight III Arleigh Burke destroyer; it is going to determine the spe- 
cific requirements for the new frigate that is going to be intro- 
duced; it is going to implement a plan to try to sustain its cruiser 
capacity; it is going to integrate into the fleet a series of new ships, 
such as the joint high-speed vessel [JHSV], the afloat forward stag- 
ing base [AFSB], and the mobile landing platform [MLP]. 

The Navy should take advantage of these opportunities to restore 
the ability of surface combatants to gain and maintain access for 
the joint force through sea control and to also sustain the ability 
of the surface fleet to provide a stabilizing presence and provide se- 
curity assistance and training to our allies and partners. 

I believe this is going to take five major actions on the part of 
the Navy. First, it is going to have to adopt an offensive mindset. 
Today a surface fleet is more focused on defeating enemy missiles 
and torpedoes than attacking the aircraft, submarines, or ships 
that have launched them. This puts us at the wrong end of the cost 
exchange and the wrong end of the missile exchange. 


The missiles that an adversary would have to launch to over- 
whelm a DDG’s air defense would cost about one-tenth the price of 
that DDG. So it puts the adversary in a very advantageous position 
because of the way we are operating. Instead, U.S. surface forces 
need to focus on killing the archer instead of shooting down his ar- 
rows. That is the only way we are going to be able to change the 
conversation and that exchange ratio. 

The number two thing we have to do is change our air defense 
approach. Our cruisers and destroyers today employ an air defense 
concept that uses the largest and most expensive interceptive mis- 
siles first and only uses cheaper, higher capacity systems, such as 
small interceptors or electronic warfare, after the long-range inter- 
ceptors have run out or failed. We need to instead engage incoming 
missiles closer to the ship with improved smaller interceptors and 
new electronic warfare capabilities and directed energy systems 
that will be fielded in the next 5 years. 

Third, we need to take the defensive workload off of our large 
surface combatants. Our cruisers and destroyers should be the of- 
fensive workhorses of the surface fleet, but, instead, they are con- 
signed to a bunch of defensive missions that are going to come be- 
cause we have no other way to provide air defense to forces ashore 
or forces at sea, as well as escorting convoys and logistic ships in 

One way you could do that is to make sure that the Navy’s new 
frigate will be able to do air defense. Another way we can do that 
is by looking at ways to shift ballistic missile defense missions, 
which are an increasing demand signal on the surface Navy, to 
shore systems that are able to do those missions much more effi- 
ciently in certain locations. 

Four, we need to expand our capacity for training and security 
force assistance from sea. Today we only have half the number of 
small surface combatants that the Navy said are required. Half. 
What that means is, for all of those missions for minesweeping, for 
training, for maritime security, like counterpiracy, we are having 
to use cruisers and destroyers instead of using frigates and other 
small ships as we have done in the past. 

We need to look at ways to be able to expand the ability of other 
ships, such as those in our logistics fleet or in support ships, to be 
able to do some of those missions instead of using our large surface 
combatants to do so. There is ways we could do that by adapting 
the LCS mission package concept and widening its approach and 
using it on other ships than just the LCS. 

Fifth, we need to adopt new technologies. Lasers, rail gun, new 
electronic warfare systems, and unmanned systems are all mature, 
and we have seen examples of them being used in operational envi- 
ronments. The Navy needs to start looking at ways to integrate 
these into combatant ships to be able to take advantage of what 
they are going to provide in terms of higher capacity, lower cost, 
offensive, and defensive capabilities. 

These actions would enhance warfighting. They would enhance 
our ability to provide presence. And the end effect of that is going 
to be deterrence. And that is what we are looking for from the 
Navy, because, fundamentally, the Nation depends on naval forces 
to deter and defeat other forces in conflict. 


I look forward to your questions and the discussion that will fol- 
low. Thank you. 

[The prepared statement of Mr. Clark can be found in the Appen- 
dix on page 31.] 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you, Mr. Clark. 

Mr. McGrath. 


Mr. McGrath. Thank you, Chairman Forbes, Ranking Member 
Courtney, and other members of the subcommittee for the invita- 
tion to testify here today on the role of surface forces in presence, 
deterrence, and warfighting. 

Surface forces play distinct roles in all three of these functions 
with the capability of the ship generally determining how exten- 
sible it is throughout the range of functions. Generally speaking, 
the more capable the ship, the more extensible it is. 

That said, a new generation of threats, a decline in surface force 
proficiency in some vital missions, and a lack of operational imagi- 
nation raise important questions about the future employment of 
the surface force in wartime. 

China’s 20-year program of naval modernization and the develop- 
ment of anti-access and area-denial [A2/AD] regime are in no small 
measure associated with their realization after the Taiwan Strait 
Crisis of 1996 that American naval dominance in East Asia had to 
be contested. During this last 20 years, the U.S. Navy has gotten 
smaller, even as it has purposely de-emphasized the capabilities 
that are now required to counter China’s A2/AD complex. 

After years of neglecting surface-based antisubmarine warfare 
and antisurface warfare, we are now faced with a rising peer com- 
petitor who is forcing us to face this neglect. 

We have a surface force that is less capable of destroying enemy 
surface and submarine forces than its Cold War predecessor. We 
have a carrier air wing that has privileged short-range strike to the 
point where its effectiveness and traditional war-at-sea tasks is 
questionable. That question of the carrier air wing is one I hope we 
are able to take up on another day. 

In the future, sophisticated sea-denial strategies, such as those 
wielded by the Chinese, will drive the U.S. Navy to look at seizing 
temporary and limited pockets of sea control in order to enable 
other follow-on operations, something I like to call offensive sea 
control, though it bothers the purists. 

In an era of little or no threat, the Navy packed its defense 
around the carrier and it positioned itself close to an adversary in 
order to generate maximal combat sorties. Against a high-end, 
near-peer competitor implementing an A2/AD strategy, this is no 
longer possible. The carrier strike group will have to fight its way 
into portions of the ocean from which it can then execute strikes 
and then quickly retire and/or relocate. 

In essence, this resembles an island-hopping campaign that you 
are familiar with from the Second World War, except, whereas in 
those battles islands were seized and then held to enable follow-on 
operations, in this paradigm, pieces of the ocean will be seized and 


held for some period of time from which offensive operations are 
then conducted. 

Critical to any concept of offensive sea control is a more lethal, 
mobile, and innovatively employed surface force. We must begin to 
more holistically evaluate risk, and we must recognize that our cur- 
rent concepts of force employment provide a determined foe with 
increasingly less complexity. 

I look forward to a discussion with you today of creating oper- 
ational problems for potential adversaries with more innovatively 
operated surface forces wielding powerful offensive and defensive 
weapons. Thank you. 

[The prepared statement of Mr. McGrath can be found in the Ap- 
pendix on page 50.] 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you, Mr. McGrath. 

And let me maybe set a stage. And I am going to ask a number 
of things — it is not an exam. So don’t feel like you have to answer 
each one. Take whichever one you want to set kind of the founda- 
tion of this. 

Both of you have talked about today how we have been planning 
essentially for an uncontested environment, we are no longer going 
to be in an uncontested environment. If I had General Welch here 
from the Air Force, he would say the exact same thing, that tomor- 
row we are not going to be in an uncontested environment. 

How did we miss that? I mean, you know, did we go a decade 
or two decades just missing the fact that one day we would be in 
a contested environment? It seems like to me that was pretty obvi- 
ous. How did we miss that on such a big scale? 

The second thing is: As we find ourselves moving into this con- 
tested environment, are we talking about the need to change plat- 
forms or concepts and strategies or perhaps both? 

And then, if it is changing concepts, how good are we at chang- 
ing? I mean, for the longest time we have been talking about Air- 
Sea Battle concept. That was the big, you know, concept du jour 
and all of a sudden, shoom, it just got swept out, you know, under 
the rug. 

And then the last thing that I would like for you to kind of put 
in that framework: We are talking about the high-end A2/AD stuff 
that we are looking at. But we looked at in the full hearing today — 
we had Admiral Locklear here, and one of the questions I asked — 
and I know both of you have looked at the new Office of Naval In- 
telligence report that just came out. It really talked about the mili- 
tary maritime buildup for China. 

And in addition to that, it talked about them putting out more 
naval ships this year than any other country and more next year. 
But one of the things that particularly concerned me was it is not 
just their naval ships, but it is what they are doing in their coast 
guards. And their coast guard now — with the ships that they have 
in their coast guard alone, they are within like 68 ships of our en- 
tire Navy and they are having huge capacity and capability in- 

And I showed Admiral Locklear a picture, which I imagine you 
two have seen — I should have showed it to you beforehand — but it 
is of a coast guard ship that they have and they have on it “Tug 
Boat 25.” I am sure you have seen it. It is painted white. And then 


I showed a picture beside that of their amphibious naval ship that 
is just painted gray. But they are the exact same ship, you know. 

And I worry sometimes that, when we measure and hear the 
Navy talking, they are comparing our Navy against their navy, but 
we are missing those lower tier aggressive fights. 

So putting that in perspective, how did we miss this environ- 
mental shift? Are we looking at platforms versus concepts? And 
then how do we take into account kind of this lower tier aggressive 
action we are seeing not just from the Chinese, but the Russians, 
the Iranians? And how does that play into what we are doing here? 
Either or both of you on that. 

Mr. Clark. Okay. Well, so I will go first. I will tackle some of 

To start with the last one first — or to start with this overall 
question of, I guess, how did we end up in a contested environment 
without realizing that we were going to do so, a lot of that had to 
do with the fact that we were fighting other conflicts at that time. 

So during the post-Cold War period, for about 25 years, from, you 
know, 1990 until 2015, we have enjoyed a relatively peaceful time, 
from the Navy’s perspective, of not having to deal with a peer com- 

But for the first 10 years or so of that, there was really no com- 
petitor at all and we didn’t expect that the capabilities that Russia 
had developed would then be proliferated to a bunch of new actors. 
And then, when that happened, we continued to rely on our exist- 
ing Cold War systems to get us through. 

By upgrading them, we figured that they would be able to con- 
tinue to provide us the capacity to defeat new cruise missiles, new, 
you know, weapons that China and others were getting that were 
coming from the Russians, not realizing that, at some point, the 
number of weapons that would be able to be brought against us 
would exceed the capacity of ships to be able to defend themselves. 
And that is really the fundamental metric that is being exceeded 
here, is that more weapons can be brought to bear against us than 
our defensive systems can handle. 

And when we say a “contested environment,” that is what we are 
really talking about, is that we are going from a time when one or 
two missiles might get shot at you by a rogue state or a terrorist 
actor to now having hundreds of weapons being shot at you by a 
state actor who has been able to buy them from the Russians. So 
that kind of accretion of capacity over time is how that sneaks up 
on you. And, before you know it, you realize that you are now on 
the wrong end of the cost exchange and need to make a dramatic 
change to alter that. 

Part of what China has been doing in their pretty smart strategy 
of developing naval capability has been to develop the maritime 
services, the non-navy coast guard and other surveillance services 
that they use that are not military but, instead, civilian forces that 
go out and use similar capabilities to go press their case on legal 
issues, so executing lawfare. 

The problem that we have right now is that the U.S. Navy and 
the U.S. allies in that region don’t have a commensurate or propor- 
tional capability to deal with what is called sub-conventional ag- 
gression. So what the Chinese do is they do aggression, but it is 


below the level of conventional conflict, in the hopes that, over 
time, they are going to be able to gain an advantage in the com- 
petition for territories in the South China Sea and East China Sea. 

So we don’t have a commensurate set of non- warship, non- 
combatant-type capabilities that are able to be deployed in that re- 
gion. And our allies don’t have the same thing. So we are not able 
to assist them in the way that we might be able to where we do 
equip our noncombatants in a way that would let them contribute 
to that. 

I would say, in order to address these two problems, the higher 
end problem of dealing with a contested environment and the lower 
end problem of the subconventional conflict, there is going to be 
some changes to platforms, but it is going to be a lot of changes 
to concepts that are involved. 

Because how we approach air defense in an environment where 
the adversary can launch more weapons than I have the capacity 
to handle means I need to come up with a new air defense concept. 
So I need to start looking at shooting down incoming weapons clos- 
er to my own ship than I would like to because I need to be able 
to use smaller weapons, weapons with shorter range that I can 
have higher capacity with. And I can get into some more detail on 

But there is some specifics on there. But the technical limitations 
of those systems at a high capacity are such that they don’t go very 
far away. So I have got to shift my air defense concept to be closer 
in to my ship, which is a cultural change for the Navy. We like to 
shoot things as far away as possible so I can get multiple cracks 
at them before they arrive. 

We also need to change our concept for how we provide security 
assistance to our partners. So if China is using its coast guard to 
bully the Philippines or Japan, we need to think about having 
ships that are able to operate at that lower level. 

So we need to have noncombatant ships like JHSVs or Coast 
Guard ships or noncombatant logistics vessels that are able to go 
be out there to provide presence that are able to deter China from 
that kind of activity because U.S. forces are nearby, but without es- 
calating it by having a warship there. Because right now our only 
option is to put a cruiser or a destroyer in that region, and that 
is highly escalatory. 

And then the additional thing we need to do is look at our pay- 
loads. And so we may need to make some fundamental changes 
with regard to what kinds of weapons we develop and what prior- 
ities we put on weapons development. Right now we build a lot of 
weapons that are designed for a single mission, and they are gen- 
erally relatively large weapons with big warheads. 

In the future, we are going to have to look at our weapons capac- 
ity and maximizing it to get more offensive firepower and we need 
to go to smaller weapons that use smaller warheads and take ad- 
vantage of their precision to get the same effect as the larger war- 
head weapons. 

And I need to look at shorter range weapons that perhaps can 
be smaller as well so I can carry more of them on my ships, more 
of them on my airplanes, to expand the capacity that I am able to 


bring to bear against an adversary who has got a high capacity of 
his own. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you. 

Mr. McGrath, do you want to take a bite at that, especially — I 
know you have written a lot about distributed lethality. How does 
that play in that concept in both terms of offensively for us but, 
also, maybe a cost-imposition strategy against some of our oppo- 

Mr. McGrath. Yes, sir. Let me start with how did we miss it. 
We were busy. We were busy doing something else. Not everybody 
missed it. I think the Navy did a pretty good job tracking the de- 
sires and the actions of the PRC [People’s Republic of China] as it 
reacted to the event that I discussed earlier, the Taiwan Strait inci- 
dent of 1996. The problem was that the rest of the military and the 
Department of Defense was doing very important today work, the 
Iraq war and the Afghanistan war. 

I think that PRC was wise in when it picked its time to mod- 
ernize. Again, our attention was elsewhere. Most of our attention 
was elsewhere. I think, though, that that dynamic has changed, 
and I see very positive signs here on the Hill, at the White House, 
and at the Pentagon with respect to focusing more appropriately on 
China as a peer competitor. 

You asked about changing platforms and concepts and systems. 
Everything needs to be on the table. We have arrived at a place 
where our Navy hasn’t fought a war — a real war in decades against 
another Navy or against land forces that were attempting to de- 
stroy it. 

The tactics, techniques, procedures, platforms, acquisition paths 
that we have placed ourselves on are not up to the challenge of a 
peer competitor that would wish to deny us what we consider our 
primary competitive advantage, and that is the projection of power 
from the sea. 

So I think everything has to be looked at. You can’t look at it 
all at the same time and fund it all at the same levels, but you can 
think about these things. And I see a lot of thought going into evo- 
lution of the air wing, distributed lethality, the submarine forces. 
Networked operations is just fascinating, the things that they are 
talking about. So I think the Navy is really leaning forward in that 

As for Air-Sea Battle, I think, to some extent, when you say it 
was swept under the rug, some of that I think is, I think, a very 
positive sense of trying to put some toothpaste back in the tube 
and stop talking about it all the time. Talk about the things that 
you have made decisions — ^very important decisions to talk about 
because those decisions and what you reveal has a potential impact 
and an effect that you have thought about and that you can meas- 
ure. So I think the Department has gotten a little smarter about 
how to talk about it. 

You asked about distributed lethality, and that is something the 
surface force is talking about quite a bit. Distributed lethality or, 
as I like to describe it, a concept in which the surface forces of the 
United States Navy are on an individual unit level made more 
powerful and then, to really optimize that investment, operated dif- 
ferently, not just in the sort of defense of the carrier battle group — 


although we still have to do that — defense of the amphibious ready 
group — although that must still be done — but to create mischief, to 
spread the adversary’s ISR [intelligence, surveillance, and recon- 
naissance] forces, to make them assign weapons to a lot more tar- 
gets so that then any one target has a smaller number of weapons 
assigned to it. You are diluting — you are thinning his quiver before 
he ever shoots. These are reasonable operational ends that the sur- 
face force can pursue. 

A more distributed surface force in wartime is, I think, a laud- 
able goal. The way the surface force operates in the presence and 
deterrence phases of operations is where we most likely are to sort 
of rub up against these nontraditional forces that you have de- 
scribed from the PRC. 

Quite simply, there aren’t enough of our forces to be there and 
to be watchful and to provide a jaundiced eye at the operations 
that are ongoing. Oftentimes these operations come to our atten- 
tion because the nation who believes its rights are being violated 
videotapes the event or, even worse, China videotapes the event be- 
cause what it is doing was plan in order to have a desired effect 
that it could then exploit later. 

I think we have to get more sophisticated about how we work 
with our allies in the region to respond to these events, pre- 
planned responses in which escalation is controlled, in which the 
story that would be written is thought about in advance, in which 
those nations use the legal justification — or the legal system to 
their best advantage. 

I have no problem with the Philippines, for instance, taking 
China to court. I think we should be encouraging nations in the re- 
gion to use the U.N. [United Nations] and the Law of the Sea Con- 
vention to the max extent that they possibly can. I am not sure dis- 
tributed lethality has a real impact on that problem in presence 
and deterrence. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you. 

Mr. Courtney. 

Mr. Courtney. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

And, again, thank you to both witnesses. 

Mr. Clark, again, you started off with taking us back to the be- 
ginning of the century and the shipbuilding plans and, you know, 
the best laid plans obviously have changed. 

You know, one of the sort of fallout that we are still wrestling 
with as a subcommittee is the cruiser change that you mentioned 
and, obviously, trying to figure out a cruiser modernization plan 
that works both in terms of, you know, the length of time that 
these cruisers can be available and, obviously, you know, fitting it 
into the rest of the shipbuilding plan. 

I was just wondering if you had any comments in terms of the 
back-and-forth over the last year or two about, you know, what the 
Navy’s proposed. Congress’ response, and any possible changes 
even from here. 

Mr. Clark. Right. Thank you. 

So the Navy had proposed originally to decommission about half 
of its cruisers in a money-saving effort mostly. And then Congress 
came back and required the Navy to come up with a better plan 
and there was some money set aside to be able to support that. 


And the Navy came up with what I think was probably the best 
argument and the best plan going forward, which was to take those 
11 cruisers, which are half the cruiser force, put them into a layup 
of sorts and then modernize them over time and then bring them 
back into the fleet some number of years later so that they would 
be able to extend their lives and that they would be available out 
into the 2030s — into the late 2030s or early 2040s. 

What that would do is a couple of things. So it would save the 
Navy some money in the near term because those ships would be 
largely de-manned and then the cost to operate them would not be 
borne by the Navy until they get brought back into the fleet. So 
there would be some near-term savings. 

And then down the road, the Navy would be able to have them 
back in the fleet at a time when it is having to buy the new SSBN 
[ballistic missile submarine], which is going to decimate the ship- 
building plan. It is going to be — 40 percent, maybe more, of the 
amount of money that would normally be allocated to shipbuilding 
might be going to the SSBN and the carrier that would be built 
around the same time. So there wouldn’t be much money for any- 
thing else. Cruisers would be available to help augment the capac- 
ity of the surface fleet. 

I think that was a very effective plan in terms of sustaining force 
structure, dealing with the flscal constraints the Navy is under 
right now. The challenge with that, though, is that the Navy 
doesn’t have a good track record of taking ships out of the fleet to 
put into some layup or inactive period and bringing them back. 
They tend to go to that inactive state and then make their way 
eventually to decommissioning instead of going back into the fleet 
at some later date. 

So I think, if the Navy could be held to account to ensure that 
those ships get brought back into fleet and showed that willingness 
by having money set aside to support the phased modernization 
that would occur, I believe that would be the best approach. 

Now, I think a compromise, the 2/4/6 plan, is a worthwhile alter- 
native because it still helps extend the lives of the cruisers out into 
the 2030s so they are able to address the crunch in shipbuilding 
funds that will occur in the future. 

It does save some money in the near term so that there are some 
benefits on both sides to that, and I think it is a worthwhile com- 
promise. It would be good to see the Navy put some money against 
it so that it would be clear that that plan was funded, though, so 
they would be able to pursue it. 

Because, otherwise, your only alternatives end up being keep 
them in the fleet, but have them at some level of operational capa- 
bility that is not clear because they are not being modernized and 
they are probably not able to operate as effectively as the other 
cruisers, or decommission them entirely, which is not an alter- 
native that is being presented. So I think the 2/4/6 plan would be 

Mr. Courtney. Mr. McGrath. 

Mr. McGrath. Mr. Courtney, my sense is that, with respect to 
surface force structure, good ideas are in short supply. We are deal- 
ing mostly with the least bad ideas. And taking all the cruisers at 
one time and bringing them back slowly over a course of time I 


thought was a reasonable response from the Navy to a financial sit- 
uation that they are having a tough time dealing with. 

2/4/6 is, I think, a reasonable compromise between congressional 
interests and the Navy’s interests. I do think, as Bryan said, if the 
Navy had some money after 2019 in the budget to fund it, this 
would probably not be a conversation. 

There is very little money to be had, given the number of things 
the Navy is trying to do, trying to build new ships and new sub- 
marines, trying to fund its deployed operations, trying to ensure 
that we don’t so starve non-deployed ships of maintenance and 
modernization money that it becomes inordinately expensive to 
bring them out when it is their time to go. 

All of these things factor into the decisions they make. And, quite 
frankly, when I see Congress insert money back into the budget to 
keep cruisers in, if you were to do the same thing in 2019, 2020, 
2021, and 2022, that would satisfy me quite a bit because I would 
like to see this program go forward. 

Mr. Courtney. Thank you. 

Mr. Forbes. And just a clarification. To do the modernization, 
you have to have the money in. Is that fair, for both of you? 

Mr. Clark. Yes. 

Mr. Forbes. And at this particular point in time the Navy has 
not put any money in their FYDP [Future Years Defense Program] 
to do the modernization, have they? 

Mr. Clark. Only the ships that are being done this year. 

Mr. Forbes. Right. 

But they haven’t done anything in their 5-year plan? 

Mr. McGrath. Right. I don’t think there is anything after the 
2015 and 2016 ship. 

Mr. Forbes. Mr. Russell, our newest member of the sub- 
committee, we now recognize him for 5 minutes. 

And, once again, we are delighted to have you as part of the sub- 

Mr. Russell. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

And thank you, each, for the very insightful overviews. A lot of 
challenges there. 

In the 1980s, you had kind of a whole restructuring of moving 
to the future of our defense posture and you did see a lot of ships 
that, to meet the need, were brought out of mothball. And some 
had been in and out of mothball for several iterations and per- 
formed magnificently. 

And, you know, Mr. Clark, with regard to the small surface ves- 
sels and what would be needed to perform some of those roles, is 
that an option that the Navy could turn to to make up some of that 
capacity in the short term? 

Mr. Clark. That might be. So one challenge we will run into is 
it is expensive to take a ship out of mothballs and bring it back 
to a condition where it can operate on a, you know, frequent basis 

So that would be something to think about, is that these ships 
are intended to be relatively inexpensive ships that do these mis- 
sions at the lower end of capability. So if we have to spend a lot 
of money to bring a low-end-capability ship into the fleet, maybe 
that is not worth it. 


The first approach might be to go after some of the noncombat- 
ant ships that we already have in what is the national fleet. So if 
you look in what the government owns in terms of ships, you have 
got the Navy and its combatant ships, which are warships that do 
their stuff. 

There is also logistics ships that the Navy has that could be 
used, in some cases, to go off and do some security cooperation ac- 
tivities, and they do already. They do exercises in some cases. And 
you could put mission packages on them that would let them do 
different things than they do today. 

You could also tap into joint high-speed vessels, which are an- 
other form of logistics ship. You could go into some of our support 
ships, which include various salvage ships and repair vessels, and 
those things can be used for security cooperation and sometimes 

Then we can also go into some of the supply ships that are part 
of the Ready Reserve Force, which are reserve ships that we main- 
tain in operational status that are designed to be brought out with- 
in 5 or 30 or 60 days, that could be made operational and taken 
out, and they can use them for some of these security cooperation 
activities. And they are designed to be brought out, and it is rel- 
atively inexpensive to do so. 

So I may go after those first before we then go into the mothball 
fleet and pull some ships out. But it is definitely an option, and it 
may be less expensive than we anticipate. 

Mr. Russell. It seems like a lot of the critical threats that we 
hear throughout is with regard to advance missile technologies. 

You spoke of the cost-ratio benefit to potential opponents and 
how they deal with this. And I know everything from nuclear de- 
fense capacity with the AN/TPY-2 radars, to the Aegis, to the 
THAAD [Terminal High Altitude Area Defense], a number of other 

We also have a lot of allies and partners. Our English-speaking 
allies, in particular, we don’t even have to learn languages to oper- 
ate with them, and they have great shipbuilding capacity. 

Does that factor into any of the comprehensive strategy in pres- 
ence, even, as we look to deal with some of that? And how do we 
get them up on systems that we find were already in short supply? 

Mr. Clark. So I will let Bryan answer, too. 

But we do. So many of our allies and partners operate Aegis sys- 
tems and similar systems, and they do deploy with us. So pretty 
regularly a NATO [North Atlantic Treaty Organization] destroyer 
or frigate will go with a carrier strike group on its deployment and 
act as part of its escort ship umbrella, if you will. So we regularly 
do deployments where we take advantage of what allies and part- 
ners bring to bear. 

Mr. McGrath. Mr. Forbes mentioned the surface Navy’s distrib- 
uted lethality concept, and I think part in parcel to that is the fact 
that we have allies that do have serious capability. The South Ko- 
reans have wonderful surface combatants. The Australians. The 
Japanese. The Indians aren’t necessarily treaty allies, but they are 
friends and we operate with the Indians quite a bit. So there is a 
great hunger within the sort of world surface force. 


Admiral Mullen used to talk about the “thousand-ship Navy.” 
Distributed lethality is the thousand-ship Navy with teeth. And I 
think that the ability that we have to integrate high-end ships of 
other fleets into our operations, it is almost built in. They have 
Link 16, you know, that we are using the same kinds of systems. 

On the low end, this is something the U.S. Navy has tradition- 
ally not done all that well, is small ships. And I was a captain of 
a ship. We all come up through the system. And we all would love 
to scorch around on really fast ships as lieutenants and be in com- 
mand of those things, but they are expensive to maintain, a lot of 
them, far from home. And we wind up looking — especially in times 
of fiscal contraction, those are nice to have. And we concentrate on 
the high-end warfighting more so than that low end. 

I think, when we find ourselves in a position to more appro- 
priately fund naval power, we ought to put some money into the 
low end. We ought to look at some kind of a fast patrol vessel, 
heavily armed, four to eight 200-mile surface-to-surface missiles, 
that we could build for ourselves and build for export, that we 
could potentially operate in joint bases or composite bases as a way 
of doing what I like to call maritime boots on the ground, economi- 
cally showing the flag. 

We all have to recognize that these are ships of limited capa- 
bility, but they show the flag and they are reminders of what is 
over the horizon. 

Mr. Russell. Not far from a lend-lease type of approach from 
many years ago. 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I yield back. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you. 

The gentleman from Rhode Island, Mr. Langevin, is recognized 
for 5 minutes. 

Mr. Langevin. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

I want to thank our witnesses for your testimony today. 

If I could, I would like to talk first about cutting-edge electric 
weapons capabilities that are starting to deploy operationally, spe- 
cifically the LaWS [Laser Weapon System] system deployed onto 
the USS Ponce right now in the Arabian Gulf, and rail gun and ad- 
vanced EW [electronic warfare] capabilities. These systems are, as 
you know, starting to become more and more mature and starting 
to make their way out to the fleet. 

And what I want to know is — obviously, the Navy is clearly plan- 
ning further development. But could you provide your assessments 
of the Navy’s plans and whether you feel these technologies could 
be responsibly accelerated. 

Mr. Clark. So that is a terrific point. The Navy right now is 
slowly integrating these new technologies into the fleet. And what 
you are seeing right now is an emphasis on some demonstration 
projects like the Ponce, where we take an existing system that has 
been developed in the technology world and bringing it on and just 
bolting it down to the ship and seeing how it works. 

When you get to larger systems, they are going to require a little 
bit more of a footprint, more interaction with the ship’s combat sys- 
tem and electrical power and cooling systems, and that is where 
you have to do some engineering to figure out where it is going to 
go, how to fit it in, how to hook it up. 


The Navy has not yet got a good plan for how it is going to inte- 
grate higher energy lasers, so the kinds of lasers that you would 
need to be able to do missile defense, not the smaller one that is 
on the Ponce, but something more in the 300-kilowatt range. 

Those lasers are quickly maturing. I have seen in the last couple 
weeks lasers that get up at about half that power and, putting a 
few of those together, you essentially get to about the 300-kilowatt 
range. So in the next few years, they are going to be available. The 
Navy needs to be thinking about how they are going to put that 
into the next class of — or the next iteration of surface warships 
that it is developing. 

Similarly, with rail gun, the Navy has got a demonstration 
project that it is going to do next year using Stockton with a rail 
gun onboard, which is terrific. It is a great way to show the appli- 
cability of that kind of weapon to a ship. 

But, again, there is not a thought or plan yet to integrate them 
into another class of warship, except perhaps a DG-1000 down the 
road, which might be a good thing. But, again, that is one ship. 
And it is a three-ship class; so, it is not likely to be able to trans- 
late into an additional number of hulls. 

The Navy needs to think about: Well, how would I take a rail 
gun and put it onto a number of ships that would make it able to 
make a difference in warfighting? So 

Mr. Langevin. Yeah. Exactly what you are saying is what con- 
cerns me, is that the technologies are maturing faster than what 
we may realize. And my fear is that these things are going to be 
ready and we are not ready to deploy them and the capabilities in 

Mr. Clark. Exactly. 

Mr. Langevin. Well, I appreciate the answer. 

Mr. McGrath, as you allude to in your testimony, there is a sea 
change occurring in the capabilities of undersea systems, including 
in how they might support surface action. 

While submarines will clearly continue to be the nexus of such 
capabilities, how might advanced undersea systems and sensors 
play into the concept of disaggregated surface forces that you dis- 

Mr. McGrath. Sir, in a big way, especially when the shooting 
starts. The ability of long-range unmanned undersea vehicles to de- 
ploy electronic warfare sensors, to employ weaponized UAVs [un- 
manned aerial vehicles] that could then remove some of the threat 
that we discussed earlier to surface operations — there are so 
many — and I am sure you have had some of these briefs. 

What we can bring — the combat power of them, what we can 
bring from under the surface of the ocean, because it is there, it 
is hiding, and the reaction time to it in many cases is negligible 
for an adversary, huge capability. 

And I appreciate you bringing up the question because what it 
does is it highlights the degree to which the Navy fights as a sys- 
tem. We don’t fight as an aircraft carrier. We fight as a strike 
group. We fight as an Expeditionary Strike Force. We fight as a 
joint force. And so all of these weapons systems work together in, 
I think, a very robust architecture to support each other. 


So I think there is a huge role for subsurface-launched sensors 
and weapons in helping to enable disaggregated surface operations. 
One very important way is to be able to put up long-range ISR as- 
sets, maybe some kind of a UAV that takes off, flies around for 8 
or 10 hours, supports a SAG [surface action group] that is 
disaggregated, and then it flies to a land base and lands for recov- 
ery. That would be a useful capability. But I think the sky is the 
limit on how we can use the undersea force. 

Mr. Langevin. Very good. Thank you, both. 

And I yield back, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Forbes. I thank the gentleman for his questions. You have 
been a leader on these technology issues. And, hopefully, this sub- 
committee can play a major role in helping the Navy to make sure 
we are moving faster at seeing how we can deploy them. So thanks 
for your questions. 

Mr. Langevin. Thank you. 

And, Mr. Chairman, I should mention that, although I — ^you 
know, obviously, it is appropriate to raise this issue with respect 
to the Navy in this subcommittee — the Navy has been a leader in 
trying to push these technologies that have been in the lab and get 
them actually into the field. The other services could take a lead 

Mr. Forbes. We just get greedy and we want to get them there 
even faster. 

Mr. Langevin. Exactly. 

Mr. Forbes. So that is good, Jim. 

Now, I would like to recognize the distinguished gentleman from 
Texas, the chairman of the Agriculture Committee, Mr. Conaway, 
for 5 minutes. 

Mr. Conaway. Well, thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

I represent a district that is totally landlocked. I don’t have any 
ports. I don’t have any shipbuilding. I don’t have anything like 
that. So 

And, Mr. McGrath, probably the sea is the limit rather than the 
sky is the limit on that last phrase that you used earlier. 

Mr. McGrath. I stand corrected. 

Mr. Conaway. Mr. Clark, on your five-point program, you made 
a reference to a kill-the-archer issue versus, I think, what we are 
doing right now. Put some meat on the bone on that for me, given 
that the archer’s range is generally longer than the reach of a lot 
of our stuff that we are bringing to the fight. Help me understand 
what you are talking about. 

Mr. Clark. You bet. 

So the archers, in this case, are going to be aircraft, submarines, 
and surface ships that are able to launch antiship cruise missiles 
at our surface ships. 

Today the surface ships we deploy don’t have weapons that are 
able to reach enemy aircraft, ships, or submarines until we are al- 
ready well within range of their antiship cruise missiles. So, as 
Congressman Forbes has said, we are outsticked. The way you get 
out of that is we have to deploy some new weapons, and that is 
why I have got the emphasis on weapons there. 

So for the aircraft threat, the new SM-6 missile that is coming 
out that has been deployed on a few ships already and is being in- 


corporated with the new Aegis baseline, that missile is going to be 
able to reach an airplane outside the range of the airplane’s anti- 
ship cruise missiles in most cases — or in many cases. So that gives 
us that ability to hit the archer before he is in range to shoot his 
arrows. That is a good news story on the air side. 

We don’t have a similar capability on the ship side. So if I want 
to shoot another ship and I am a surface ship, I have to wait until 
I am within Harpoon range if I have Harpoons even onboard, 
which means I am probably half of the distance that he can reach 
me. So he can — I am well within his weapons envelope when I do 

For submarines, it is even worse because my antisubmarine rock- 
et that I have got onboard of a surface ship has a range of about 
12 miles, whereas the antiship cruise missiles that Chinese sub- 
marines, for example, can carry have ranges of a couple hundred 
miles and they can be launched comfortably from 100 to 150 miles, 
so I am well within his weapons range when I am able to shoot 

Now, we might have a helicopter or something flying around that 
might be able to attack him, but that is only if the helicopter is 
in the right place at the right time and is able to do something 
about it. So we need new weapons that allow me to increase the 

So on the ship side, the Navy is developing the long-range anti- 
ship missile, the LRASM, that will eventually be going onto surface 
ships. I would advocate that. In addition to being able to do ship 
attack, that missile will also be able to do strike missions, because 
every VLS [vertical launching system] cell that I take for a strike 
mission is a missile cell I can’t use for anything else. So we need 
more multi-mission weapons. 

And then, for the submarine threat, we need to develop an anti- 
ship rocket that has got longer range. So if I do detect a contact, 
a submarine out, you know, dozens of miles away, more, I can en- 
gage him right away and make him go away before he is able to 
mount an attack against me. 

Mr. Conaway. Dozens of miles is significantly shorter than 200 
miles you mentioned earlier. 

Mr. Clark. Right. Right. 

So it is — ^you could — we could maybe develop an antisubmarine 
rocket that goes out, you know, 100, 150 miles that would be 

Mr. Conaway. So it is on — it is on the weapons package, isn’t it, 
not necessarily the 

Mr. Clark. Right. 

Mr. Conaway [continuing]. The transport of those weapons? 

Mr. Clark. Right. My detection capability may or may not ex- 
tend out that far under water. 

Mr. Conaway. Yeah. 

Mr. Clark. But you certainly want the ability to reach out that 
far if you were able to get detection. 

Mr. Conaway. I got you. 

And then your fourth point about expanded capacity for train 
and equipment. I must have dozed off. Can you back up and go 
through that one again. Are you just talking about using different 


ships to do the train and equip mission that we are currently 

Mr. Clark. Right. So, normally, when we want to do security co- 
operation — 

Mr. Conaway. And stop laughing in the back. You saw me doz- 
ing off. So stop it back there. 

Mr. Clark. Normally, the kind of security cooperation or training 
missions that we do with partner nations, especially some of the 
less-capable partners, we use small surface combatants to do that. 

We have used frigates in a lot of cases to do that over the last 
20 or 30 years. Well, we don’t have any frigates now. They are all 
being decommissioned, and we are only going to have half the 

Mr. Conaway. Unless you rename the LCS. 

Mr. Clark. Right. Right. 

And so we have got a few LCS out there, but not very many, and 
they would ostensibly pick that load up. But we only have half the 
number of small surface combatants that are required right now, 
and it is going to be below the requirement until well into the 

Mr. Conaway. So that is more just a tactics issue? I mean 

Mr. Clark. So I am arguing that we take some of the non- 
combatant ships 

Mr. Conaway. Right. 

Mr. Clark [continuing]. In the fleet and just take some of those 
mission packages from the LCS and, instead, put those onto the 
noncombatant ships and get the joint high-speed vessel and the 
mobile landing platform and some logistic ships to go out and do 
these missions instead. So the missions get done, but we are not 
having to do it with a cruiser. 

Mr. Conaway. All right. Well, thank you all for your comments. 
Thank you. 

Mr. Forbes. Mr. McGrath, could you follow up on Mr. Conaway’s 
question a little bit, too. Because we have really three concepts. We 
can block the arrow. You know, we can try to blind the archer. We 
can try to kill the archer. 

I think one of the things both of you have talked about is that 
right now we have an overcapacity of trying to block the arrow, but 
technology is getting to the point where it is going to be more and 
more difficult to do that; so, we are going to have to try to kill the 

And so can you kind of explain the tradeoffs we have in those 
two concepts. 

Mr. McGrath. Bryan came up in the Navy as a submariner. I 
came up as a surface guy. Aegis for most of my time. And so, when 
Bryan talks about his concept for air defense and he talks about 
waiting longer to take the shot, I start to get a little nervous, be- 
cause that is — that is the human reaction that you have in a ship, 
is that you want to kill that missile as far away from you and from 
what you are protecting as possible. 

Range equals dollars. It is a very simple — very simple thing. 
Probability of kill increases as range decreases. Right? All of these 
things are interrelated, but the nervousness of a surface warfare 
officer remains. If I have to sit there and wait, it is a hard thing 
to do. 


And so, when Bryan and I have our arguments about this con- 
cept, I talk to him about we have to — there is a culture to over- 
come, there are training issues we would have to overcome, and we 
would have to layer into this — so that is — what he is describing is 
the blocking — right? — killing the — killing that — killing that in- 
bound missile closer to you at a more economical rate. That is fine. 

The other — one of the other things that you could do is you can 
mess with its guidance. You can — you can make it track something 
that is not you — deceit, deception. The surface force in N2/N6 at 
the Pentagon are putting a lot of money into the SEWIP [Surface 
Electronic Warfare Improvement Program] Block III electronic war- 
fare system that we will put to sea on ships. 

The more we can defeat kinetic attacks with nonkinetic means, 
the deeper our magazines will get. The more we are able to — the 
more we are able to integrate the weapons systems that Mr. 
Langevin was talking about that are pennies or dollars a shot, the 
deeper our magazines will get. 

We have to maintain, though, the ability to reach out at range. 
Some percentage of those magazines has to be filled with weapons 
that can take advantage of the sensor volume that we have. 

That has been one of our problems for a long time in surface 
warfare, is we go out there and we bang away with a SPY-1 
radar — or soon a SPY-6 radar — on the AMDR [Air and Missile De- 
fense Radar] that has got, I mean, hundreds of miles of range, but 
we could only take advantage of a small part of that search vol- 
ume. The SM-6 helps us overcome that. 

So taking the archer out before he shoots his arrow is, once 
again, important, like it was in the Cold War. In the Cold War, we 
set F-14s out hundreds of miles from the aircraft carrier and we 
had tactics that we developed. We had tanking that would support 
it. The outer air battle was something we took a lot of pride in 
being able to fight in. When that threat dissipated, we de-empha- 
sized the outer air battle. We are gaining some of that back. 

I think, on a totally unrelated — not a totally unrelated — the F- 
35 will need a longer range AAW [anti-aircraft warfare] weapon, 
something like we used to — like the Phoenix that we grew up with 
on the F-14. We need a long-range air-to-air weapon so that the 
F-35 operating in this naval integrated fire control-counter air en- 
vironment, NIFC-CA [Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air 
Capability], can get that archer even further away, maybe when he 
goes feet wet. Maybe you don’t have to wait until he gets near his 
weapons release point. 

So the technology is there that we can exploit, but we need the 
weapons that exploit the search volume that we are able to gen- 

Mr. Forbes. I want to thank you both for taking the time to be 
here with us today. And, as I mentioned to both of you before we 
started, I want to give you now whatever wrap-up time each of you 
need for anything you need to clarify, maybe elaborate or that we 
didn’t ask that you think is important to give as part of this tran- 

And, Mr. Clark, we will start with you. 

Mr. Clark. Thank you, sir. 


So one thing I will note is the new technologies we talked about 
that could be used for air defense, so rail gun, lasers. High-powered 
microwave would be another example and then electronic warfare. 
All of those technologies could do a lot to give us more defensive 
capacity and open up those vertical launch system cells for offen- 
sive weapons instead. 

The one thing that you have to do in order to leverage them, 
though, is you have to be able to accept that missiles are going to 
get closer to you before you engage them, because all of those sys- 
tems are line-of-sight systems that can only, you know, engage a 
missile if it is on the horizon 10 miles away and, if it is a little 
bit higher up, maybe 20 miles away. So you are not going to be 
able to engage incoming missiles with a nonkinetic weapon like 
that at more than 20 or 30 miles, generally. So that is part of the 
air defense concept you have to accept. 

But then, you know, stepping back to look at the big picture, the 
Navy is faced with a lot of hard choices in the next, you know, cou- 
ple of years as it starts to figure out how to equip the surface force. 
And the surface force doesn’t have the clear and unambiguous mis- 
sion of the undersea forces that, you know, do things for surveil- 
lance and strike and for strategic deterrence, and it doesn’t nec- 
essarily have the clear missions of the carrier air wing. 

But it is kind of the jack-of-all-trades. It does a lot of different 
things, and we depend on it for a lot of different missions, from se- 
curity cooperation all the way through high-end missile defense 
and strike. 

And, as a result, it is hard for it to be able to maintain that abil- 
ity to work in every domain, from undersea to air and space, as 
well as being able to do every mission across the range of military 

So the Navy has got to put the investment necessary to maintain 
the force structure capacity so it can maintain the presence. It has 
got to maintain the warfighting capability in the fleet that it needs 
in order to be effective and then deter conflict. And then it has got 
to be willing to sustain that over time, even in an environment 
where other things are going to intrude upon it. 

So I would advocate that the Navy needs to look carefully at 
these upcoming decisions and, you know, adapt the surface fleet to 
be able to evolve into the fleet that is able to go back on offense 
and develop this offensive mindset and equip it with the kinds of 
weapons and the kinds of sensors it needs to be able to be effective. 

And, you know, I think one thing — one thing I fear is that we 
will just progress down the status quo, we will simply recapitalize 
our existing systems, as opposed to adopting new concepts that 
might enable us to maintain the warfighting capability we need 
going into the future. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you. 

Mr. McGrath, give you the last word. 

Mr. McGrath. Thank you for this opportunity. 

My friend Ron O’Rourke at the Congressional Research Service 
likes to talk about 

Mr. Forbes. He is watching what you say; so, make sure that 
you don’t say anything critical. 


Mr. McGrath. He talks about being in a new strategic era, and 
I think he is right. My way of putting that is: Great power dynam- 
ics back on the menu. 

We have to begin to think differently about how conflict in this 
new strategic era is waged. We cannot continue to address this 
question with the same risk profile that we applied to campaigns 
and campaign analysis when we were the sole hyperpower, when 
there was no blue-water threat to the U.S. Navy. 

Those aspects of that threat environment drove us to well-inten- 
tioned decisions. We have removed surface-to-surface missiles from 
our DDG Arleigh Burke destroyers. We built Arleigh Burke destroy- 
ers, from number 51 to number 78, with a Harpoon missile on it. 
Number 79 through today cannot kill another ship over the horizon 
by itself We have not built a ship in the United States Navy since 
1999 that can kill another ship over the horizon by itself. 

That decision and decisions about how to allocate missions with- 
in the portfolio — surface, subsurface and aviation — has led to a sit- 
uation in which we look at the surface force, the Navy looks at the 
surface force, as something that needs to be protected by the air 
wing. I think that needs to be questioned. 

I think we have put a ton of money in the last 30 years into the 
world’s most sophisticated air defense systems. I think that we 
have to begin to question whether or not air supremacy or air supe- 
riority that is required for surface operations — detached surface op- 
erations — whether that can’t be provided to a level of risk that is 
acceptable by the ships themselves. 

I am not saying that we should drive three-ship SAGs into the 
Taiwan Strait. I am saying that the Chinese ISR complex is not 
equally as good throughout its entire volume and that there are 
places within it where surface forces will be able to operate, will 
be able to create mayhem, and will be able to hold targets that that 
opponent would value at risk. We just have to think differently 
about that risk. 

Thank you. 

Mr. Forbes. Thank you, both. We appreciate your time, and 
thank you for sharing it with us today. 

And, with that, Mr. Courtney if there is nothing else that you 
have, then, we are adjourned. 

Mr. Courtney. Thank you, both. 

Mr. Forbes. Yeah. 

[Whereupon, at 3:08 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned.] 


April 15, 2015 


April 15, 2015 

Opening Remarks of the Honorable J. Randy Forbes 
for the 

Seapower and Projection Forces Hearing on 

The Role of Surface Forces in Presence, Deterrence, and Warfighting 
April 15, 2015 

Today the subcommittee meets to discuss the role of surface forces in presence, 
deterrence, and warfighting. 1 am particularly pleased to have two distinguished Seapower 
expert witnesses to testify before our subcommittee: 

• Mr. Bry'an Clark, Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary 
Assessments; and 

• Mr. Bry'an McGrath, Managing Director at The FerryBridge Group. 

Thank you all for being here and testifying today. 

This committee’s last hearing discussed the evolving maritime security report in the 
Navy’s recently released report, “A Cooperative Strategy for 2C' Century Seapower.” Today, 
we examine surface forces in this new environment and how we accomplish the transition from a 
defensive to an offensive surface force capable of operating and achieving objectives both 
independently and in cooperation with other forces. 

Looking at our naval surface forces today, we see a multitude of new capabilities are 
being integrated into the fleet. We are incorporating better sensors including an expanded air 
and missile defense radar that is 30 times better than current technologies and a new digital 
electronic warfare capability to better detect, decoy and defeat incoming missiles. We are 
continuing to expand our anti-submarine warfare capabilities including the addition of multi- 
function towed array and a variable depth sonar on our small surface combatants that will be able 
to better track even the quietest of submarines. We are fielding new missiles to better pace the 
threats we face, including a long range anti-ship missile and better short range missile 
capabilities resident in the enhanced sea sparrow missile. 

Although we face severe fiscal constraints in research and development, there ai-e new 
technologies available that the Navy will shortly be able to integrate into existing platforms. 
Advancements in technology, such as the Electromagnetic Railgun and the Laser Weapon 
System, permit the integration of systems and promote the multi-functionality of systems. 

Instead of a multimillion missile, a single salvo from a rail gun will cost less than $50 thousand. 
These systems represent a great opportunity to fundamentally changing the cost curves in our 

In additional to harnessing our technological innovation, our Navy is exploring a new 
concept entitled distributed lethality — a concept that would disaggregate and better arm the 
surface fleet. Providing for a better tactical employment of our surface combatants by 
disaggregating surface combatants from a centralized carrier battle group may represent our best 
chance of creating a tactical force multiplier. By complicating potential adversaries’ ability to 
successfully target future naval combatants, our Navy becomes more survivable and increases 
the probability' that potential aggressors will decide to pass at future conflict. 

1 continue to believe the most challenging capability or tactical problem that the Navy has 
to contend with does not reside within the Department or is it posed by potential adversaries. I 
believe that the most pervasive and difficult problem that the United States Navy faces today is 
the will of this body to provide for our common defense and to not to be lulled into a false sense 

( 27 ) 


of security. The idea of “American exceptionalism” are not idle words but rather a unique 
American approach to our current challenges and fiiture goals and objectives. We need to 
embrace the role of the United States, and especially the role of the U.S. Navy and surface fleet 
in particular, in maintaining and securing the global commons. 

As proponents of seapower, we know that our nation’s viability and future is linked to the 
strength and healthy of our fleet. 1 just question what we are doing today to ensure our next 
generation is able to enjoy the same benefits of life and liberty that preceding generations have 
provided to us. 

1 look forward to hearing Mr. Clark and Mr. McGrath’s insights and how the Navy can 
reach distributed lethality amidst fiscal constraints. 

With that, I turn to the ranking member of the subcommittee, Mr. Courtney. 


Opening Remarks for Congressman Joe Courtney 
Ranking Member 

Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee 
Role of Surface Forces in Presence, Deterrence, and Warfighting 
April 15,2015 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. We are here today to get the perspectives of two well-informed 
witnesses on the role of our surface forces in presence, deterrence and warfighting today and into 
the future. 

As the recently released Cooperative Strategy for 2f* Century Seapower makes clear, our Navy 
is engaged in a wide variety of missions critical for the security of our nation. In order to achieve 
this strategy, we need a robust mix of ships and capabilities to ensure that we retain the ability to 
project power, maintain presence, deter aggression and, if needed, fight and win conflicts. Our 
surface forces are, and will continue to be, absolutely critical to these areas. 

Our surface forces are as stressed as they have ever been, and we continue to demand more of 
them. They have had to be ready for war, whether it has been conducting tomahawk strike 
missions into Libya or against ISIL insurgents, or conducting ballistic missile defense in the 
Mediterranean or off the coast of North Korea. They have had to protect our sea lines of 
communication against piracy and drug trafficking. And they have had to represent American 
might on the high seas, training to defeat threats in the realms of surface, subsurface, air, cyber, 
and electronic warfare. 

Looking ahead, our surface forces, like the rest of our military, are facing a wide range of 
challenges. Other security actors are increasing technological capability in every realm, but 
especially in their surface fleet’s ability to wage and win war in the maritime domain. Territorial 
disputes in the South China Sea and East China Sea run the risk ofinflaming tensions and 
disrupting maritime commerce in some of the busiest waterw'ays in the world. Russia’s 
aggressive behavior has manifested itself at sea as well as on land all the way to the Arctic. 

But for all their ability to wage war, our surface forces also represent an olive branch to those 
who are willing to take it. The surface navy’s contributions to humanitarian missions in the last 
ten years have literally saved thousands of lives, from Haiti to Indonesia to the Philippines. And 
the sight of an aircraft carrier, destroyer, or amphibious war,ship arriving in a foreign port — with 
sailors manning the rails in dress blues or summer whites — signals our commitment to ensuring 
peaceful relations with our allies and partners. 

Given these complex set of challenges, it is imperative that we give serious thought to the future 
of our nation’s surface navy and the diverse problem .set it faces. Intellectual rigor must be 
applies to our assumptions, our technologies, and our strategies. How we move out on initiatives 
such as the cruiser modernization, the development of future small surface combatants, the 
impact of cyber warfare and electronic warfare on our communications systems, our ability to 
fight and win in an anti-access area denial (A2/AD) environment, our ability to detect enemy 


submarines, and the creation of new weapons systems such as rail guns and laser weapons, will 
all determine our success in facing the challenges of the future. 

To this end, 1 welcome the discussion from Bryan Clark and Bryan McGrath. Both have recently 
offered their insight on how the surface Navy can expand its offensive capabilities, extend its 
reach, and stay on the leading edge of maritime control. 1 look forward to hearing more about 
their thoughts on the future of our surface forces and areas where the Navy, as well as this panel, 
can work to augment capabilities today and in the future. 

Mr. Chairman, thank y'ou again and 1 look forward to our discussion today. 


April 15, 2015 


By Bryan Clark 
Senior Fellow 

Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments 

Chairman Forbes and Ranking Member Courtney, thank you for inviting me to 
appear before you today to present my thoughts on the role of U.S. Navy surface 
forces in presence, deterrence, and warfighting. 

This discussion is timely, as today’s U.S. Navy surface fleet is at a crossroads. At 
the beginning of this century, the Navy planned a new approach to surface 
warfare supported by a family of new ships: the CG(X) missile defense cruiser, 
DD(X) land attack destroyer, and sea control-focused Littoral Combat Ship 

This new family of ships was intended to enable “network-centric warfare,” 
wherein each ship would specialize in a small set of missions and aggregate their 
capabilities through a dense communications network. This would enable each 
ship to devote more effort to a smaller set of capabilities to address improving 
threats, while retaining the ability of the larger fleet to conduct the full range of 
surface operations. Networking, it was argued, would enable numerous, widely- 
dispersed LCSs to provide day-to-day presence for security cooperation and 
training missions while being able to integrate with less numerous, regionally- 
focused CG(X)s and DD(X)s for deterrence and warfighting operations. Each of 
those ships, however, is now cancelled or in transition, and the concept of 

' Sea control is defined by the Navy as, “The employment of naval forces, supported by land and 
air forces as appropriate, in order to achieve military objectives in vital sea areas. Such operations 
include destruction of enemy naval forces, suppression of enemy sea commerce, protection of vital 
sea lanes, and establishment of local military superiority in areas of naval operations.” See U.S. 
Navy, Naval Operations Concept 2010 (Washington, DC: U.S. Navy, 2010), available at 
http :// .m il/ m aritim e/noe/NOC20 1 0.pdf. 


network centric warfare has been undermined by improving communications 
jamming and counter-targeting capabilities among our potential adversaries. 

The Navy needs a new approach to surface warfare informed by the demands of a 
security environment that is not as benign or stable as it was in 2001. Fifteen 
years ago, a decade after the fall of the Soviet Union, the Navy was without a 
significant competitor. U.S. surface combatants could take sea control for granted 
and specialize in new missions such as ballistic missile defense (BMD), counter- 
piracy, or strike. Today the Navy’s ability to achieve sea control is increasingly- 
contested. Sophisticated anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD)‘ capabilities continue to 
improve and proliferate from near-peer competitors to other U.S. rivals, 
threatening U.S. freedom of action and challenging its security assurances to 
allies and partners. At the same time, instability is spreading through the actions 
of revisionist states such as Russia, China, and Iran, as well as the failure of 
governments in the Middle East and Africa. Despite these growing threats to U.S. 
security interests, the funding available to the Navy for new force structure and 
capabilities is projected to decline in the next decade due to a combination of 
rising personnel costs and legislative budget caps. 

Fortunately, the Navy has an opportunity to adapt its surface fleet to address these 
challenges. Consider that in the next year the Navy will be: 

• Identifying the systems and configuration of the Flight III Arleigh Burke 
destroyer, whose production has been restarted with the truncation of the 

• Determining specific requirements for the last 20 LCSs to make them 
more lethal; 

• Implementing a plan to sustain its cruiser capacity given the cancellation 

• Deciding the characteristics and acquisition approach for several surface 
fleet weapons and sensors; and 

• Integrating into the fleet new ship classes such as the Joint High Speed 
Vessel (JHSV), Afloat Forward Staging Base (AFSB) and Mobile Landing 
Platform (MLP) that could reduce the demand for surface combatants. 

The Navy should take advantage of these opportunities to achieve two main 

‘ For the purposes of this paper, anti-access (A2) capabilities are associated with denying access to 
major fixed-point targets, especially large forward bases, whereas area-denial (AD) capabilities 
threaten mobile targets over an area of operations, principally maritime forces, to include those 
beyond the littorals. See Andrew Krepinevich, Why AirSea Battle? (Washington, DC: Center for 
Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, 2010), pp. 8-11. 


1. Restore the ability of surface combatants to gain and maintain access for 
the joint force through sea control; and 

2. Sustain the ability of the surface fleet to provide a stabilizing presence 
and conduct security cooperation operations with allies and partners. 

Surface Warfighting and the Centrality of Sea Control 

As described in DoD’s Air-Sea Battle Concept and .loint Operational Access 
Concept, and as characterized by Navy leaders, the Service’s current role in joint 
warfighting is gaining and sustaining access for the joint force. ^ This 
responsibility often falls to naval forces because they can conduct .sustained large- 
scale operations from an offshore sanctuary outside the range of enemy land- 
based weapons and are often the first element of the joint force to arrive at the 
conflict area. In comparison, air forces require fixed land bases that may not 
initially be prepared to support sustained operations or may be located in close 
proximity to the adversary. 

The surface fleet’s main contribution to access is intended to be sea control, as 
described in the Naval Operations Concept, consisting of anti-surface warfare 
(ASUW), anti-submarine warfare (ASW), mine warfare (MIW), anti-air warfare 
(AAW) and strike warfare against shore-based missile launchers."* While ground, 
air, and other naval forces will likely contribute to sea control in a variety of 
situations, they also have competing power-projection missions such as 
amphibious assault, strike, and associated surveillance and reconnaissance. Only 
surface combatants retain sea control as their primaiy responsibility. 

Increases in the number and capability of anti-ship missiles suggest that to 
achieve sea control in the future, surface combatants will need to defeat enemy 
aircraft, ships, submarines, and shore-based missile launchers before they are 
within weapons range of U.S. forces. Otherwise the size of incoming missile 
salvos may overwhelm surface combatant defensive capacity. In other words, the 
surface fleet will need to concentrate on “killing the archer,” or offensive sea 
control, as opposed to “shooting down the arrow,” or defensive sea control. 

■’ The Air-Sea Battle concept is subordinate to the Joint Operational Access Concept and focuses 
on defeat of A2/AD threats in air and maritime areas adjacent to and in the conflict area. See DoD, 
Air-Sea Battle (Washington, DC: DoD, 2013), available at http;//www.defense,gov/pubs/asb- 
conceptimplementation-summary-may-201 3.pdf; Admiral Jonathan Greenert, U.S. Navy, Chief of 
Naval Operations, Statement before the House Armed Services Committee, “Planning for 
Sequestration in FY2014 and Perspectives of the Military Services on the Strategic Choices and 
Management Review,” September 18, 2013; Christopher Cavas, “China Dominates Naval Strategy 
Discussion,” Defense News, June 1 7, 2014. 

* U.S. Navy, Naval Operations Concept 2010. 


Surface navy leaders recently proposed a concept called “distributed lethality” 
that would improve the surface fleet’s ability to attack enemy ships and missile 
launchers.'"’ In this concept, almost all Navy surface ships, including supply and 
amphibious vessels, would carry offensive surface-to-surface missiles, providing 
more opportunities to engage enemy platforms before they can attack and 
complicating the adversary’s targeting picture with a targe number of potential 
threats. The primary shortfall in this new concept is that it does not address the 
most significant constraint on surface fleet offensive capacity — air defense. In 
wartime CGs and DDGs will devote much of their weapons capacity to defeating 
incoming missiles, leaving little room for offensive weapons that attack enemy 
ships, aircraft, or submarines. Further, supply and amphibious vessels that add 
long-range surface-to-surface missiles will make themselves more important 
targets to the enemy without improving their ability to protect themselves from 
missile attack. 

To improve its capacity to “kill the archer,” the surface fleet should start with its 
existing surface combatant fleet instead of arming new' classes of ships. CGs and 
DDGs in particular can protect themselves in a high threat environment and have 
the sensor and communication capabilities to coordinate long-range attacks. To 
free up w'eapons capacity on these ships for offensive missions, the Navy should 
consider new' approaches for air defense at sea and ballistic missile defense 
(BMD) ashore. 

Establishing a New Approach to Sea-Based A A W 

The main battery of a large surface combatant (CG or DDG) is its vertical launch 
system (VLS) magazine, which has a relatively small capacity and cannot be 
reloaded at sea.® Offensive ASUW, AAW, ASW, and strike weapons compete for 
space in the VLS magazine with defensive AAW weapons, so each cell not 
needed for air defense could be devoted instead to either weapons that can attack 
ships, aircraft, and submarines, or missile launchers and sensors ashore. Today 
only about one-third of VLS cells in a standard peacetime load-out contain 
offensive weapons such as Tomahawk or SlVf-6 missiles that can engage enemy 
weapon launchers or aircraft before they are in range to attack. This ratio would 
likely shrink even lower in wartime due to the increased need for air defense in 
protection of aircraft carriers. 

’ Vice Admiral Thomas Rowden, Rear Admiral Pete Gumataotao, and Rear Admiral Peter Fanta, 
"Distributed Lethality," Proceedings, LI.S. Naval Institute, 141/1/1, No. 343, January 2015, 
available at http://wwvv', 5-01/distributed-lethality. 

Flight 1 DDG-51S have 90 VLS cells, whereas Flight 11 and ila DDG-51 s have 96 VLS cells; a 
CG has 1 22 cells. There are several potential approaches for at-sea reloading that could be pursued 
to increase the effective capacity of a large surface combatant. 



War at sea today and in the future will likely include large anti-ship cruise missile 
(ASCM) salvos launched from ships, submarines, and aircraft, as well as smaller 
numbers of anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM) attacks launched from shore. 
Today’s long-range ASCMs cost $1-3 million, while an ASBM costs about $6- 
10 million.’ Given the highly favorable cost engage ratios, an adversary could be 
expected to launch dozens of them in each attempt to disable or destroy a $1-2 
billion DDG or the $1 1 billion carrier it defends. 

The surface fleet could increase its defensive capacity — and significantly redress 
the cost imbalance — by adopting a new medium-range approach to air and missile 
defense. Today large surface combatants employ an integrated, layered defensive 
AAW scheme designed to engage enemy aircraft and missiles multiple times 
starting from long range (from 50 nm to more than 100 nm) through medium 
range (about 10-30 nm) to short range (less than about 5 nm). Each layer is 
serviced by a different set of interceptors. Those that are part of the long-range 
layer (e.g., SM-2 and SM-6) are the preferred means of defense. They are also the 
largest (taking up the most VLS space) and often the most expensive 
interceptors*. Electronic warfare (EW) systems are only used at short range 
against missiles that leak through the long and medium-range layers. 

This layered defensive AAW approach puts surface combatants on the wrong end 
of weapon and cost exchange ratios. Using today’s Navy doctrine,^ the entire VLS 
magazine of a DDG (if entirely devoted to air defense) would be consumed 
against fewer than 50 ASCMs — missiles that would cost the enemy about 2 
percent the price of the DDG.‘” Better, longer-range interceptors only exacerbate 

^ An Indian/Russian BrahMos ASCM is $2 million-SS million. See “Indian Army Demands More 
Missile Regiments,” Strategy Page (blog), January 26, 2010, available at: 
http://www.strategypage. coiTi/htmw/litart/articles/20 1 00 1 26.aspx. A U.S. Tomahawk LACM 
(comparable in sophistication to many ASCMs) is $1 .3 million. See DoD, Fiscal Year (FY) 15 
Budget Estimates: Weapons Procurement, Navy (Washington, DC: DoD, 2014), available at 
http:/ 5pres/wpn_ book.pdf. Two Chinese analysts, Qiu Zhenwei 
and Long Haiyan, published the ASBM estimate in 2006. See Andrew S. Erickson, “Ballistic 
Trajectory — China Develops New Anti-Ship Missile,” Jane 's Intelligence Review, 22, January 4, 
2010 . 

* Navy .Air and Missile Defense Command (NAMDC), The Navy Update and Role in Integrated 
Air and Missile Defense, Power Point Presentation (Dahlgren, VA: NAMDC, August 31, 2009), 
available at 


’ A common U.S. air defense tactic is to shoot two interceptors at an incoming missile, look for 
successful engagement, and then shoot again if necessary. Therefore at least two interceptors are 
expended on every incoming missile. 

A Flight II or Ila DDG-51 has ninety-six VLS cells. A nominal wartime loadout would be forty- 
eight SM-2 interceptors, sixteen SM-6 interceptors, thirty-two ESSMs (eight cells), eight ASW 
rockets, and sixteen Tomahawk LACMs. 



the problem. The SM-6 air defense interceptor that enters service this year costs 
about $4 million," while an advanced ASCM costs about $2-3 million'^. Given 
normal air defense doctrine, eaeh defensive engagement using SM-6s will cost 
two to four times that of the ASCM it is intended to defeat. 

A defensive AAW scheme centered instead on medium-range (10-30 nm) " 
interceptors such as the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) would improve 
both the Navy’s weapon and cost exchange ratios. ESSM engagements would be 
cheaper'^ than SM-6 engagements, and the ESSM Block 2 in development will 
have a fully active seeker that should achieve similar effectiveness to the SM-6. 
More importantly, medium-range interceptors such as ESSM are smaller than 
longer-range interceptors and can be placed in “quad packs” in each VLS cell, 
quadrupling the ship’s defensive AAW capacity and/or enabling fewer VLS cells 
to be devoted to defensive AAW weapons. Moreover, shifting the air defense 
scheme to 10-30 nm will also enable EW systems to be used instead of kinetic 
interceptors against some enemy ASCMs. This could free up additional VLS cells 
for offensive operations. (With a long-range air defense concept, EW systems are 
only used at close range when kinetic interceptors fail.) 

Similarly, a medium-range defensive AAW scheme will better enable the surface 
fleet to integrate new weapons such as lasers and electromagnetic rail guns 
(EMRG) that will likely be mature in the early to mid-2020s.'^ Because they do 
not require VLS cells, increasing the use of these systems for defensive AAW will 
enable the Navy to shift additional VLS capacity to offensive weapons. Lasers 

" For comparison, an SM-2 interceptor costs about $680,000, See DoD. Fiscal Year (FY) 15 
Builget Estimates: Weapons Procurement, Navy. 

'■ This is the cost of the Russia/India codeveloped BrahMos ASCM based on the Russian SS-N-26 
Yahkont ASCM. The BrahMos ASCM is being actively marketed to Latin American and 
Southeast Asian militaries, See “Indian Army Demands More Missile Regiments,” 2010; and 
“BrahMos Missile Can Be Exported to Southeast Asian, Latin American Nations,” Economic 
Times, August 3, 2014. For comparison, a Tomahaw'k costs about $1.3 million. See DoD, Fiscal 
Year (FY) 15 Budget Estimates: Weapons Procurement, Navy. 

An escort will need defensive AAW capabilities that reach 20-30 nm to be able to defend 
nearby ships. For safety. Navy ships normally maintain at least 3-5 nm between ships. An ASCM 
travelling at Mach 2 will take about forty-five seconds to reach a targeted ship 20 ntn away. An 
escort ship could engage the incoming ASCM with ESSMs at that range from 1 0 nm on the other 
side of the targeted ship, These engagements would occur more than 5 nm from the defended ship, 
after which the defended ship’s point defenses — close-in weapon system (CIWS) and Rolling 
Airframe Missile (RAM) — would be in range to engage “ieakers” that are not defeated by the 

An ESSM costs about $1 .3 million, See DoD, Fiscal Year (FY) 15 Budget Estimates: Weapons 
Procurement, Navy, 

' Ronald O’Rourke, Navy DDG-Sland DDG-1000 Destroyer Programs: Background and Issues 
for Congress, RL32] 09 (Washington, DC; CRS, July 3 1 ,2014). 



operate in a straight line from the weapon to the target and are limited by the 
horizon from engaging a sea-skimming ASCM at more than 10-15 nm, while 
power limitations in the emerging generation of lasers will constrain their 
effective range to about 10 nm."’An EMRG will be most effective against 
ASCMs and ASBMs from about 10-40 nm due to the time-of-fight of its 
unpowered projectile. At longer ranges the enemy missile could maneuver before 
the projectile would reach it. 

Laser and EMRG weapons, however, will not be able to completely replace 
interceptors or point defense systems. Too much moisture in the air may reduce a 
laser’s effectiveness, while clouds, dust, or fog can prevent the electro-optical 
directors that aim the lasers from “seeing” the target. An EMRG is not affected by 
atmospheric effects but will require more electrical power than a CG or Arleigh 
Burke DDG can generate. It will have to be initially deployed on a separate vessel 
such as a IHSV or Zumwalt DDG. And even when the required power levels are 
available, the EMRG rate of fire will only be 6-10 shots per minute, which will 
limit the enemy missile salvo size that can be engaged to between three and six 

A final advantage of a medium-range air defense scheme is that it acknowledges 
the challenges in obtaining over-the-horizon targeting data in an A2/AD 
environment where data links could be jammed. Detecting a sea-skimming 
ASCM at the SM-6’s maximum range would require a surface sensor positioned 
more than 100 nm forward from the surface combatant or an aircraft at more than 
10,000 feet altitude above the fleet. But a CG or DDG could detect the same 
ASCM at 10-30 nm using its organic sensors, including its embarked helicopter. 

The Navy will still need the SM-6, however, for offensive AAW. The SM-6 can 
engage enemy aircraft outside their ASCM range and are much less expensive 
than the aircraft they are designed to destroy, producing a more advantageous cost 
exchange ratio than using the SM-6 against enemy ASCMs. Enemy aircraft also 
generally fly at higher altitudes than ASCMs, enabling them to be detected farther 
away by shipboard radars whose visibility is otherwise limited by the horizon. 

Ronald O'Rourke, Navy Shipboard Lasers for Surface, Air, and Missile Defense: Background 
and Issues for Congress, R41526 (Washington, DC: CRS, July 31, 2014). Also, as lasers become 
more common in defensive AAW, potential adversaries may begin attempting to harden missiles 
against laser attack, 

’’For example, a nominal ASCM speed is Mach 3,5, or about 2500 kts, and EMRG projectiles 
will average about Mach 5, or about 3600 kts. The ASCM will travel about 6 nm between EMRG 
shots if it has a 1 0 shot/minute firing rate. If the ASCM salvo is initially engaged at 30 nm, the 
EMRG will be able to shoot five times at the incoming salvo before it arrives at the ship. With a 
SS-L-S doctrine, at most three missiles could be engaged, and with a S-L-S doctrine, at most five 
could be engaged. 


When available, the engagement range for offensive AAW could be enhanced by 
over-the-horizon targeting information via existing datalinks. 

This new approach to sea-based AAW would increase the capacity of surface 
combatants for air defense and enable them to shift more of their VLS cells to 
host offensive missiles. This would allow surface combatants to kill enemy 
archers, as opposed to defeating their individual arrows. 

Implementing new approaches to BMD 

Adding more offensive weapons to surface combatant VLS batteries will only 
improve surface fleet warfighting if those ships are not tied down providing BMD 
to allies and partners. BMD is a relatively new mission for surface combatants; 
prior to 2005 no Navy ships were assigned to BMD operations, and force 
structure requirements did not reflect an allocation for this mission. * Now the 
Navy plans to have 43 BMD-capable ships by 2019''’ and on average two large 
surface combatants continuously deployed in the Mediterranean Sea, Arabian 
Gulf, and Western Pacific Ocean to provide BMD for partners and allies overseas. 
Supporting these demands requires at least 18 CGs or DDGs.'*’ 

Large surface combatants are attractive for BMD overseas because they can 
protect a large area (or “footprint”) since the Navy’s SM-3 interceptor destroys 
the ballistic missile in its “mid-course” phase outside the atmosphere. But the 
CGs and DDGs assigned to BMD missions are largely unavailable for defending 
carriers, hunting submarines, or interdicting enemy aircraft. The geometry 
required to intercept a ballistic missile prevents the BMD ship from maneuvering 
outside of a relatively small area while the readiness needed to promptly respond 

'* Ronald O’Rourke, Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Progi-am: Background and 
Issues for Congress, RL33745 (Washington, DC: CRS, July 31, 2014). 

’’ Missile Defense Agency, “Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense: Status,” available at status.html, accessed July 2, 2014; O’Rourke, Navy Aegis 
Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program. 

This calculation assumes two BMD-capable ships are deployed in the Mediterranean as part of 
the European Phased Adaptive Approach and in defense of Middle East partners; two are deployed 
in the Middle East to defend Arabian Gulf partners; and two are deployed in the Western Pacific 
to defend Japan and South Korea. This level of deployment is consistent with press reports of 
BMD deployments and Navy leader statements. “Forward Deployed Naval Force” (FDNF) ships 
based in Rota, Spain, and Yokosuka, Japan, source European and Pacific BMD deployments, 
respectively. The FDNF operational model requires two ships for each one underway. BMD ships 
in the Middle East would deploy rotationally from the United States, requiring five ships for each 
one underway overseas. See Admiral Jonathan Greenert, U.S. Navy Chief of Naval Operations, 
Statement before the House Armed Services Committee, “FY 201 4 Department of Navy Posture,” 
April 16, 2013, p. 10; Christopher Cavas, “First U.S. BMD Ship Leaves for Rota,” Defense News, 
February 1, 2014. 


to enemy missile launches limits the sensor and personnel resources that can be 
spared for other missions. 

The demand for BMD ships will very likely continue to increase. Over the next 
decade, U.S. competitors plan to deploy ballistic missiles with stealthier warheads 
and “penetration aids” such as decoys or jammers designed to confuse or deceive 
the Navy’s interceptors. Rivals will also field longer-range ballistic missiles, 
which are faster and shrink the footprint that can be protected. More interceptors 
and more ships will therefore be required in the future to defend the same area. 
Unless an alternative method is developed to defend military and civilian targets 
ashore, an increasing number of CGs and DDGs will be consigned to BMD 
stations overseas. 

Shore-based BMD capabilities could reduce the demand for BMD ships. Aegis 
Ashore provides the same large, multiple-country footprint against short and 
intermediate-range ballistic missiles as a BMD-capable CG or DDG and will be 
deployed to Europe starting in 2015."* This system includes the same AN/SPY-] 
radar and Aegis BMD version 5.0 software being installed on DDG-51 Flight lla 
ships along with a 24-cell VLS carrying SM-3 interceptors. 

The Navy should pursue replacing today’s BMD ship stations in the Middle East 
and Japan with Aegis Ashore to defend fixed locations against knowm threats. The 
cost of an Aegis Ashore system is about $750 million,"^ while a Flight Ha DDG- 
51 costs about $1.6 billion and a Flight III DDG-51 is estimated to cost $1.9 
billion. The 2-3 Aegis Ashore systems that could be purchased for the cost of 
one DDG would be able to take the place of 4-15 DDGs, depending on whether 
the DDGs are forward-based. 

Achieving small combatant lethality 

Any plan to improve surface fleet warfighting must address small surface 
combatants (SSC), which the Navy intends to be more than a third of the surface 
fleet by the middle of the next decade.^'* The only SSC the Navy is building today 
is LCS, which lacks the capability to engage enemy platforms outside their 
ASCM range or to defend nearby ships from air and missile attack. LCS is instead 
designed to deploy a single mission package for ASW, ASUW, or mine 

Specifically, Aegis Ashore systems will be deployed to Poland in 2015 and to Romania in 2018. 

“SM-3 BMD, in From the Sea: EPAA & Aegis Ashore,” Defense Industry Daily, available at, accessed July 4, 2014. 

Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), Report to Congress on the Annual Long-Range Plan 
for Construction of Naval Vessels for FY2015 (Washington, DC: DoD, June 2014), 




countermeasures (MCM) operations. The Navy recently announced a plan that 
would improve SSC lethality by modifying the last 20 LCSs to be fast frigates 
(FF). The new FF would carry the LCS ASW mission package, improved armor, 
additional self-defense systems, and long-range ASUW missiles in a topside 
“box” launcher.^^ 

This plan will produce SSCs that are able to engage enemy ships outside their 
ASCM range. It will not, however, significantly enhance surface fleet 
warfighting. As A2/AD capabilities proliferate and improve, noncombatant 
logistics ships and civilian convoys will need to be protected in more places and 
situations from ASCMs launched by enemy aircraft, coastal launchers, surface 
ships, and submarines. CGs and DDGs will have to provide this protection since 
the LCS and planned FF have only self-defense AAW systems.^'* While the Navy 
is also evaluating incorporating the SLQ-32 SEWIP EW system into the LCS and 
FF, it will not eliminate the need for air defense interceptors in those situations 
where non-kinetic EW defense is unsuccessful. 

The need for CG and DDG escorts will likely result in all the Navy large surface 
combatants being taken up for defensive missions in wartime and substantially 
degrade the surface fleet’s overall combat potential. As shown in Figure 1 the 
Navy’s requirement for large surface combatants is 88. Each of the Navy’s 11 
CSGs notionally includes five CG or DDG escorts^’ and at least 18 more will be 
tied up in BMD. That leaves at most 15 CGs or DDGs available for escort 
missions — assuming air threats do not require additional CSG escorts and ships 
are not lost in combat or laid up for repair of damage suffered in combat. Since 

’’ Sam LeGrone, “SNA-Modified Littoral Combat Ship Class Changed To Fast Frigate,’’ USNI 
News, January 1 5, 20! 5, available at 5/Oi /15/sna-modif)ed-littoral- 
combat-ship-ciass-changed-fast-frigate, accessed April 1, 2015; and Sam LeGrone, “Upgunned 
LCS Hulls Picked as Navy’s Next Small Surface Combatant,” USNI News, December 11, 2014, 
available at http://news.usni.Org/2014/12/l 1/gunned-lcs-hulls-picked-navys-next-small-surface- 
combatant, accessed April 1, 2015. 

Given the LCS’s short-range missiles, a defended ship would have to operate too close to the 
LCS to permit effective maneuvering and the LCS would have to be positioned between the 
incoming missile and the escorted ship or directly in front of or behind the escorted ship. To 
ensure the incoming ASCM is intercepted, two RAM would likely be shot at each incoming 
ASCM. This would result in the LCS’s magazine of RAMs being exhausted after ten ASCM 
attacks. In the LCS’s envisioned littoral operating environment, more ASCM attacks w'ould likely 
occur before the ship could reload its RAM magazine. 

Department of the Navy, CNO, Policy for Baseline Composition and Basic Mission Capabilities 
for Major Afloat Navy and Naval Groups, OPNAVINST 3501.316B (Washington, DC: DoD, 
October 21, 2010), available at 
500%20Training%20and%20Readmess%20Services/3501, 316B.pdf. 



each convoy will require multiple escorts, it is likely all 15 will be needed for 
these operations. 

Figure 1: Surface combatant inventory as described in Navy’s FY 2015 30-year 
shipbuilding plan 


I'ofew « SSC 

Lat'.ge S^»ce 

SSDS-Sl Flighi i 

It would be siiboptiraal to allocate large surface combatants with more than 90 
VLS cells and multiple gun systems to defensive missions while SSCs with a 
dozen ASCMs constitute the surface fleet’s wartime offensive capability. Instead, 
SSCs should escort noncombatant ships in place of CGs and DDGs. With the 
medium-range air defense scheme described above, the Navy could equip FFs 
with VLS magazines and lasers to provide them with a potent air defense 
capability at a range of 10-30 nm, enough for them to protect a nearby ship. 
While the LCS sea frame may only be able to support a 16 or 24-cel! VLS 
magazine, with medium-range interceptors such as ESSM that fit four to a VLS 
cell, this would be as much air defense capacity as provided by today’s DDGs. 

Equipping the new' FF with a VLS magazine would also enable it to carry 
offensive ASUW missiles such as the Naval Strike Missile and future Long Range 
Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM), or use multi-mission missiles such as the SM-2 in 
surface-to-surface mode. The Navy could thus increase the lethality of the FF 
against enemy surface ships while also relieving CGs and DDGs of escort duties, 
allowing them to go on offense as well. 




The actions of revisionist states such as China and Russia are increasing demands 
from U.S. allies and partners for naval forces to support maritime security and 
training, and to provide a stabilizing presence. The gap between these demands 
and the supply of naval forces is growing. For example, due to sequestration and 
budget caps imposed by the 201 1 Budget Control Act (BCA), naval deployments 
to U.S. Southern Command stopped entirely during 2013 and have not returned to 
their pre-2013 levels. Worldwide, validated Combatant Commander 
requirements for presence have exceeded the fleet’s inventory of ships by more 
than 50 percent over the last three years*'’. 

The Navy’s requirement for 88 large surface combatants is designed to address 
projected needs for surface fleet warfighting and presence in stressing operational 
scenarios. According to the Navy’s shipbuilding plan depicted in Figure 1 the 
fleet will reach this number in FY 2018. Because almost all of these ships are in 
the fleet, under construction, or on contract, the Navy is likely to reach its 
numerical objective. To meet its mission requirements, however, the surface fleet 
will need to improve the capability of individual ships as describe above. 

While the Navy could have enough capable large surface combatants within the 
next few years, that does not guarantee those ships will be able to sustain naval 
presence overseas. Over the last three years, surface force leaders have cited 
manning, material condition, and training shortfalls as the most significant 
challenges facing the surface fleet^”. The Navy recently announced an “Optimized 
Fleet Readiness Plan” (OFRP) that would lengthen operational cycles for large 
surface combatants and other CSG units to ensure sufficient time to train crews 
and maintain ships and aircraft between deployments.^' This plan includes a 
single seven-month deployment over a 36-month cycle, which will produce less 
presence than today’s deployment model. Therefore, the Navy will only be 

Sam LeGrone, “Navy to Send Ship on Drug Patrols After Four Month Hiatus,” USNI News, July 
15, 2013, available at 
four-month-hiatus, accessed April 1, 2015; Jennifer Lebron, “Greenert Provides Navy Update in 
Pentagon News Conference,” DoD News, July 22, 2013, available at 
http://www. aspx?id=l 20497, accessed April 1, 2015. 

Kris Osborn, “CNO Tells Congress the US Needs 450-Ship Navy,” News, March 
12, 2014, available at http://www.military.eom/daily-news/20i4/03/12/cno-tells-congress-the-us- 
needs-450-ship-navy.html, accessed April 2, 2015, 

Thomas Copeman, Vision for the 2026 Surface Fleet (Washington, DC: DoD, 2014), 

” Daisy Khalifa, “Gortney's Readiness: Predictable, Adaptable for Sailors,” Seapower Magazine, 
April 8, 2014, available at 
redefines-readiness.html, accessed April 1, 2015. 



successful in implementing OFRP if Combatant Commanders agree to accept a 
reduction in the forces deployed to their regions. 

SSCs such as guided missile frigates (FFGs), minesweepers (MCM), and patrol 
coastal (PC) ships are intended to conduct less stressing missions such as security 
cooperation, training, maritime security, and mine clearing. But, as shown in 
Figure 1, by the end of this fiscal year, the Navy will have fewer than half its 
required number of SSCs as it decommissions its remaining FFGs faster than 
LCSs are delivered to replace them.^^ Although Figure 1 implies the number of 
SSCs will return to the required number by FY2024, it is based on the Navy’s 
shipbuilding plan, which assumes future shipbuilding funding will exceed the 
historical average. Since DoD remains under the BCA budget caps until FY 2021, 
it is unlikely these higher levels of ship construction spending will be realized, 
and the number of SSCs built could very likely be lower than planned. Moreover, 
the Navy’s planned FF ships will be more capable and therefore likely cost more 
than the LCS it will replace. This could further reduce the number of SSCs the 
Navy is able to build. 

'Fo address the large and persistent gap in SSC inventory and overseas presence, 
the Navy should equip noncombatant ships of the “National Fleet” to conduct 
some missions that would otherwise be perfonned by SSCs. The National Fleet 
formally consists of the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, which together have 
370 ships.^'^ In the U.S. Navy’s Battle Force there are about 60 noncombatant 
support and logistics ships, including (by FY 2016) seven JHSVs, two MLPs and 
one AFSB designed to host an array of unmanned systems, helicopters, and small 
boats. The National Fleet can also be considered to include the Maritime Sealift 
Command’s 26 prepositioning ships and the Department of Transportation’s 117 
National Defense Reserve Fleet (NDRF) ships, 46 of which form the U.S. Navy’s 
Ready Reserve Fleet.^'* 

OPNAV N8, Navy Combatant Vesset Force Structure Requirement, Report to Congress 
(Washington, DC: OPNAV N8, January, 2013); Deputy CNO, Report to Congress on the Annual 
Long-Range Plan for Construction of Naval Vessels for FY20I5. 

The National Fleet is described in Department of the Navy, Office of the CNO and United 
States Coast Guard, Office of the Commandant National Fleet Plan (Washington, DC: DoD, 
March 2014), and it consists of 290 Navy Battle Force Ships and ninety USCG cutters as of 
August 3. 2014. See Ronald O’Rourke, Coast Guard Cutter Procurement: Background and Issues 
for Congress, R42567 (Washington, DC: CRS, 2014). 

The fort>'-six RRF ships consist of thirty-five roll-on/roll off (RO/RO) vessels (which includes 
eight Fast Sealift Support vessels, FSS), tvifo heavy-lift or barge carrying ships, six auxiliary crane 
ships, one tanker, and two aviation repair vessels. See Department of Transportation, “National 
Defense Reserve Fleet.” available at 





The LCS mission package concept could provide a way for these noncombatant ships to 
contribute in low threat environments to missions normally conducted by SSCs. In mine 
warfare and maritime security, for example, the LCS acts as a “mother ship,” deploying 
off-board systems that conduct the mission, rather than as a tactical platform that directly 
does so. Mines are hunted today with autonomous vehicles such as the Mk-18 Mod 2 
unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) and neutralized with remotely operated systems 
including the SLQ-60 UUV. Similarly, pirates or traffickers are typically located using 
helicopters or unmanned vehicles such as the MQ-8C vertical take off UAV (VTUAV), 
and intercepted by rigid-hull inflatable boats (RHIB). These systems could also be hosted 
and deployed from a logistics ship, a JHSV or an AFSB. 

Using noncombatant ships for military missions will require augmenting these ships’ 
civilian crew with militaiy' personnel and establishing legal arrangements to allow the 
ships to use force to defend itself and other ships. These arrangements have already been 
made with the Afloat Forward Staging Base-Interim (AFSB-1) USS Ponce, which 
supports mine clearing, maritime security, and partner training today as a noncombatant 
ship in the Persian Gulf. 

To facilitate the use of LCS mission packages on other ship classes, the Navy should 
separate the management of mission packages from the LCS program. An independent 
program executive for mission packages would ensure they are able to interface with a 
wide variety of combatant and noncombatant ships. Further, the separate organization 
could explore and develop new mission packages for operations such as disaster 
response, preventive medical care, signals intelligence, airborne surveillance, counter- 
illicit trafficking, and electronic warfare. 


To sum up, the U.S. Navy has a limited window of opportunity to establish a new 
framework for surface warfare given changes in its planned family of surface 
combatants, a more demanding security environment, and continued fiscal 
challenges. This new approach will address, in particular, the diminishing 
offensive capability of large surface combatants and the growing gap between 
SSC supply and demand. 

Establishing this new framework will require significant cultural changes for the 
surface fleet. For example, freeing up CG and DDG weapon capacity for 
offensive operations can only come by evolving the fleet’s approach to air defense 
in ways that will increase its capacity while at the same time reducing the air 
defense’s mission demands on the VLS magazine. And the only way the surface 
fleet can address the shortfall in SSCs-at least in the near term-is by enabling 

accessed August 3, 2014. That the national fleet could include MSC and NDRF ships was argued 
most prominently by now-Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work in a 2008 paper: Robert 
Work, The U.S. Navy: Charting a Course for Tomorrow’s Fleet (Washington, DC: Center for 
Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, 2008). 



noncombatant ships to perform operations that were previously conducted only by 

But these changes are possible. The key will be establishing an overarching and 
unifying concept for surface warfare, such as offensive sea control, and aligning 
the surface fleet’s ships, weapons, sensors and processes to focus on supporting 
that concept. That will enable surface force leaders to establish priorities and 
make choices when fiscal constraints and external demands do not provide for 
easy decisions. 

About the Center for Strategic and Budgetarj’ Assessments 

The Center for Strategic and Budgetary.’ Assessments (CSBA) is an independent nonpartisan policy research 
institute established to promote innovative thinking and debate about national security strategy and 
investment options. CSBA's goal is to enable policymakers to make infonned decisions on matters of 
strategy, security policy and resource allocation. CSBA provides timely, impartial and insightful analyses to 
senior decision makers in the executive and legislative branches, as well as to the media and the broader 
national security community. CSBA encourages thoughtful participation in the deveiopment of national 
security strategy and policy, and in the allocation of scarce human and capital resources. CSBA’s analysis 
and outreach focus on key questions related to existing and emerging threats to US national security. Meeting 
these challenges will require transforming the national security establishment, and we are devoted to helping 
achieve this end. 



Mr. Bryan Clark. 

Prior to joining CSBA in 2013, Bryan Clark was 
Special Assistant to the Chief of Naval Operations 
and Director of his Commander’s Action Group, 
where he led development of Navy strategy and 
implemented new initiatives in electromagnetic 
spectrum operations, undersea warfare, 
expeditionary operations and personnel and 
readiness management. 

Mr. Clark served in the Navy headquarters staff from 2004 to 2011, 
leading studies in the Assessment Division and participating in the 2006 
and 2010 Quadrennial Defense Reviews. His areas of emphasis were 
modeling and simulation, strategic planning and institutional reform and 
governance. Prior to retiring from the Navy in 2007, Mr. Clark was an 
enlisted and officer submariner, serving in afloat and ashore submarine 
operational and training assignments including tours as Chief Engineer 
and Operations Officer at the Navy’s nuclear power training unit. Mr. 
Clark holds a Master of Science in National Security Studies from the 
National War College and a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and 
Philosophy from the University of Idaho. He is the recipient of the 
Department of the Navy Superior Service Medal and the Legion of 



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April 15, 2015 

Testimony before the House Armed Services Committee 
Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces 

Prepared Statement of Bryan McGrath 

Managing Director, The FerryBridge Group LLC and Assistant Director, Hudson 
Institute Center for American Seapower 

All testimony herein submitted represents the personal views of Bryan McGrath 



Thank you Chairman Forbes, Ranking Member Courtney and members of the 
Seapower and Projection Forces subcommittee for the opportunity to testify and to 
submit this written statement for the record. 

It is especially gratifying to be asked to give testimony on the role of surface forces in 
presence, deterrence, and warfighting. I served for 21 years in our nation's surface 
forces, from 1987 until 2008, with tours in frigates and cruisers and command of the 
Destroyer BULKELEY out of Norfolk. It was an honor and a privilege to take to sea 
under our nation's flag, and in my present-day work, I continue to advocate for 
powerful and numerous surface forces as part of our Navy's approach to meeting its 
global commitments. 

Presence. Deterrence, and Warfighting 

It is fortuitous that the Committee has chosen to hear testimony on the topic of 
presence, deterrence, and warfighting, as these are the three primary functions of this 
nation's Navy, and achieving the right mix and balance among the forces necessary to 
accomplish all three is crucial. 

Naval presence, often referred to as forward presence, serves a variety of ends. It 
demonstrates our commitment to the responsibilities of world leadership by ensuring 
ready and capable forces are never far from where disaster may strike. Furthermore, it 
is a sign to our friends and allies of our continuing commitment to the security and 
prosperity gained from the free movement of commerce on the earth's oceans. The 
primary attribute of a force optimized for presence would be its size, primarily 
measured in the number of ships. The combat capability of those ships would not be 
nearly as important as how numerous they were. 

Moving up the scale of violence, we come to deterrence. Deterrence is a function of two 
attributes, the first being the capability of the force available, and the second being the 
proximity of the force. Clearly, numbers matter in deterrence, but in order to achieve its 
noble ends, those platforms must have capability. Essentially, they must be powerful 
enough to convince a potential adversary that the pain he will suffer in response to his 
aggression outweighs the benefit he will gain from it (deterrence by punishment), 
and/or the capability arrayed against the aggressor must be capable enough to 
convince him that his aggression will not succeed (deterrence by denial). Finally, and 
this is where forward presence comes in, these forces must be close enough to be able to 
interpose themselves meaningfully between an aggressor and his desires. 



Finally, we come to war-fighting, which for the modern U.S. Navy means projecting 
power ashore in contested environments from the sea, after first having imposed 
operationally relevant local sea control. This link between sea control and power 
projection is often overlooked, but it is iron-clad. A Navy wishing to project power 
ashore must control the seas from which it wishes to operate and the skies above them. 

All naval platforms are not alike when it comes to the relative contributions that they 
make to these the three primary functions of presence, deterrence, and war-fighting. 

For example, the modern, VIRGINIA Class SSN is a marvel of warfighting capability. It 
can locate and destroy enemy ships and submarines, it can attack key targets ashore, 
and it can silently lurk off the coast of an adversary's mainland conducting 
sophisticated surveillance operations. The key of course to its warfighting prowess is 
the fact that it operates below the surface of the ocean, where due to both the 
professionalism of the submarine corps and the technology it operates, they are 
virtually undetectable. If the United States goes to war against any nation fielding a 
Navy of any kind, our SSN's will likely punch way above their weight in terms of a 
contribution to combat effectiveness. 

However, attack submarines contribute little to presence and only modestly to 
conventional deterrence, both of which are the inevitable downside of the platform's 
competitive advantage in combat — its ability to remain un-Iocated. 

Surface ships on the other hand, make essential contributions across the spectrum of 
operations, though there are differences among surface ships. For instance, the LCS, 
with its relatively low cost and innovative crewing concept, is an excellent presence 
platform. Because of its size and draft, it can be accommodated in a wide range of 
ports, and as it is only modestly armed, it is a good fit for operating with partner 
nations of limited naval capability. The utility of the LCS as a deterrent and a war- 
fighting platform is relatively less than its utility as a presence vehicle. It is not without 
value in these functions, it is simply optimized for the presence mission. The added 
capability that will be integrated into the FF class raises the platform's value in both 
deterrence and warfighting, especially with regard to naval adventurism. 

BURKE Class destroyers on the other hand are effective as vehicles of presence, 
deterrence, and warfighting. Bristling with combat power in its weapons and sensors, 
ton for ton these ships are among the most valuable assets in the U.S. Navy today by 
virtue of their utility in peace, war, and the space in-between. That said, a new 
generation of threats, a decline in surface force proficiency in some vital missions, and a 



lack of operational imagination raises important questions about the future of the 
surface force. 

How Did We Get Here? 

The Navy I was commissioned into in the Summer of 1987 was near the zenith of its 
Reagan-era power, with nearly 600 ships and 15 carrier battle groups operating forward 
in the Mediterranean, the Arabian Gulf, and the Western Pacific, Not only was that 
Navy large, but it was capable and proficient. My first ship was a fourteen year old, 
single screw Knox Class frigate. It did not have anything resembling what we call 
today a "Combat System"; rather, it had a number of sensors and weapons that were 
only marginally networked together. But those weapons and sensors were applied day 
in and day out in the pursuit of mastering a peer competitor in the Soviet Navy. By 
way of explanation, I was commissioned at the University of Virginia on a Saturday, 
graduated the next day, and reported to my ship two days later. Within a month, I was 
standing watch on the bridge of a ship that was actively tracking a Soviet ballistic 
missile submarine operating in the Western Atlantic. While we did not field an 
integrated combat system, we had a capable anti-submarine warfare (ASW) suite and a 
team of Sonar Technicians and operators who had been tracking Soviet submarines for 
their entire careers. 

One year later, we deployed to the Mediterranean Sea, and we operated in proximity to 
units of the Soviet surface force. For days at a time, we would passively track electronic 
emissions from those units in order to localize them, maintaining fire control solutions 
which could be readily fed into our Harpoon surface to surface missile system should 
the need arise. 

The point of this excursion is to state without reservation that the ship on which I 
served was one of the least capable combatants in the Navy of the time, yet it could still 
track and neutralize Soviet submarines and localize and engage Soviet surface forces far 
beyond the visual horizon. 

The Berlin Wall fell, and the United States Navy emerged as the uncontested master of 
the seas. Throughout the 1990's and in the absence of a viable threat to our ability to 
control the seas, the Surface Force placed additional emphasis on overland strike with 
the Tomahawk Land Attack Missile and in maritime security tasks such as Visit, Board, 
Search and Seizure — including non-compliant boardings. Anti-submarine Warfare 
(ASW) and Anti-surface Warfare (ASuW) were de-emphasized, as the threat in each 
area had dramatically receded. We also leveraged the investment the Navy made in the 
AEGIS weapon system and concentrated on mitigating the anti-ship cruise missile 



tlireat, while we de-emphasized all of the tactics and procedures that we learned in the 
1980's to deal with the Soviet Outer Air Battle threat— because that threat had also 
largely ceased to exist. 

By the time 1 assumed command of the destroyer USS BULKELEY in 2004, much had 
changed. The ship I commanded was one of the most sophisticated warships on the 
face of the earth with a truly integrated combat system and a command and control 
suite without parallel. But that ship— commissioned only three years before I took 
command — had no over the horizon surface to surface missile system. Put another 
way, we were a destroyer that could not destroy— other ships at least. As part of the 
peace dividend and in recognition of the lack of a blue water threat, the Harpoon 
missile system was removed from the Flight IIA Arleigh Burke Destroyers as a 
corporate Navy decision was made to rely on the carrier air wing and the submarine 
force to perform the ASuW mission. As a matter of fact, the United States Navy has not 
built a ship that could kill another ship over the horizon since the USS PORTER (DDG 
78) was commissioned in January of 1999. 

And while my ship the USS BULKELEY had an outstanding Sonar Suite — far better 
than that which I had on my first ship in 1987 —years of decline in surface force ASW 
proficiency due to the mission having been de-emphasized resulted in an unshakable 
conviction that if I had to face a submarine threat, I would rather have done it on the 
old, loud frigate with the highly proficient team than on my new destroyer whose 
complement of sonar technicians had declined along with their proficiency. The war on 
terror and the post-USS COLE force protection measures that we piled on our ships 
created a situation in which my sonar techs were unfortunately more likely to find 
themselves manning .50 caliber mounts or serving on boarding teams than they were to 
be hunting submarines. This was the reality of the post-Cold War Navy. We were 
great at boarding dhows in the Persian Gulf, at firing TEAMS hundreds of miles away, 
and at dealing with anti-ship cruise missiles (ASCM) close aboard. Hie blocking and 
tackling of killing ships and submarines was a fading memory. 

The Rising Threat 

True turning points in history are difficult to pinpoint, and trying to do so without the 
accumulated benefit of time is fraught with complexity. However, the Taiwan Strait 
Crisis of 1996 may prove to have been just such a turning point. Without retelling the 
history here, it is not illogical to believe that the nearly 20 year program of naval 
modernization underway in China and the development of its Anti- Access and Area 
Denial (A2AD) capability are in no small measures associated with a realization by the 



PRC in 1996 that American naval dominance in East Asia must be contested. During 
this twenty years, the U.S. Navy has gotten smaller even as it (as discussed earlier), 
purposefully de-emphasized the capabilities that now are required to counter the PRC's 
A2AD complex. 

Not only has the Navy gotten smaller, but it has concentrated its striking power in the 
aircraft carrier and its associated air wing, perhaps with the exception of the OHIO 
Class SSGN program. The Navy of today will fight in Carrier Strike Groups (CSG), and 
the surface vessels associated with those CSG's are will rarely stray far from the 
protective cover of the air wing during war. This is the direct result of investment 
decisions of the 1990's discussed earlier (the de-emphasis of ASuW in particular) and an 
untested, risk averse, and unimaginative method of employing surface forces in 
wartime. This approach leads to an unsatisfactory outcomes. The concentration of 
naval forces reduces the complexity of the targeting problem we present to an 
adversary. This is not meant to infer that the process of finding naval forces at sea who 
wish to hide has become elementary. Quite the contrary, it is still a difficult 
undertaking and will remain so in an era of Joint combined arms approaches to power 
projection. However, our operational approach would suggest to a crafty adversary 
that once they had indeed located the aircraft carrier, the overwhelming majority of 
additional naval power available is likely to be found in dose proximity. Not only does 
this greatly reduce the adversary's targeting complexity, but it also sub-optimizes one 
of the greatest attributes of naval power, that of the mobility of surface forces. 

The situation described in the previous paragraph is at the heart of some analyst's angst 
about the viability of surface forces in naval combat. After years of neglecting ASW and 
ASuW, we are now faced with a rising peer competitor who is forcing us to face this 
neglect. We have a surface force that is less capable of destroying enemy surface and 
submarine forces than its Cold-War predecessor, and we have a carrier air wing that has 
privileged short-range manned overland strike to the point where its effectiveness in 
traditional war at sea tasks is questionable. 

I will leave for another day my thoughts on how the carrier air wing should evolve to 
meet the challenges of contested operations in an A2AD environment, and turn now to 
some thoughts on how the U.S. Navy Surface Force must rise to meet the challenges of 
future high end warfare. 

Offensive Sea Control 

I use the term "offensive sea control" guardedly, as purists reading this document will 
quite rightly take issue with it. True sea control is neither offensive nor defensive; it is 


more a state of being with a temporal and geographical limit. However, 1 have begun 
to use the term to convey a sense of action, a sense of movement, a sense of going on the 
offense. In the future, sophisticated sea denial strategies will drive the U.S. Navy to 
look at "seizing" temporary and limited pockets of sea control in order to enable other 
operations. Over time, the CSG has— with the exception of its overland striking 
power— become an instrument of defense. Primarily, an instrument of defending itself. 
In an era of little or no threat, the Navy packed in its defense around the carrier and it 
positioned itself relatively close to an adversary in order to generate maximal combat 
sorties. Against a high end, near peer implementing an A2AD strategy, this will no 
longer be possible. The CSG will have to fight its way to portions of the ocean from 
which it can then execute strikes, and then quickly retire and/or relocate. In essence, 
this resembles the island-hopping campaign of the Second World War, except that 
whereas in those battles, islands were seized (and often held) to enable follow on 
operations, in the future, naval forces will "seize" and "hold" pieces of the ocean and 
the skies above them in order to strike targets ashore and to hold enemy fleets at risk. 

Critical to any concept of offensive sea control is a more lethal, mobile, and innovatively 
employed Surface Force. We must begin to more holistically evaluate risk, and we must 
recognize that our current concepts of force employment provide a determined foe with 
increasingly less complexity. 

What is to be Done? 

Naval forces in general and the Surface Force in particular need to become less 
predictable and disaggregate in meaningful ways that cause an adversary to expend 
precious intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) resources in trying to 
locate them. In order to ensure adversary ISR is siphoned off, those surface forces must 
be more lethal than those we currently field, holding more- and more diverse — 
adversary targets at risk. Additionally, a more powerful and disaggregated surface 
force will necessarily force an adversary to apply a limited amount of weapons against 
a larger number of targets, diluting constructive weapons assignments against any 
single target. 

It will not be enough to simply increase the weaponry on existing surface ships without 
operating them differently. The Navy must begin to assume additional risk in 
dispersing the fleet into powerful surface action groups capable of defending 
themselves and conducting sea control and power projection operations. A mindset has 
taken hold in Navy campaign planning that suggests a reticence to operate surface 
ships without air supremacy — air supremacy that is assumed to be established and 



maintained by the carrier air wing. This approach is necessarily limiting, and reinforces 
the unimaginative, aggregated CSG formations that present so little a challenge to a 
peer competitor's targeting complex. The Navy has been allocating considerable 
resources for over thirty years to producing the world's most sophisticated air 
dominance combat system, the AEGIS weapon system, and it is currently resident in 
over eighty cruisers and destroyers. Early in the next decade, the SPY 6 radar — also 
know as the Air and Missile Defense Radar— will join the fleet on the first Flight III 
DDG. The power of these air dominance systems must be relied upon to give surface 
action groups some measure of disaggregation from the air wing, in order to hold a 
greater number of adversary targets at risk. This does not mean that the surface force 
should steam blindly into the teeth of the A2AD architecture, but it does mean that in 
those battlespace volumes where we are able to assume additional risk, surface ships 
should be tasked with operations that support further roll-up of adversary capability. 

Priority Recommendations 

The Navy's plan to "upgun" the LCS to the FF is a great first move, but why stop there? 
Steadily and opportunistically, the Navy must regain its ability to impose sea control 
with its surface forces. The Chairman of this subcommittee has written about our 
Surface Force being "outsticked" by Peoples' Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) surface 
vessels with long range surface to surface anti-ship cruise missiles, and he was correct 
in this assertion. We must address this asymmetry and ensure that we reverse course 
and begin building every surface combatant with an effective long range surface to 
surface missile system, even as the DDG's built without them since 1999 are back-fitted 
with alacrity. 

In the realm of land attack, a weapon with ranges in-between the DDG lOOO's 
Advanced Gun System range of 65 miles and the 1000 mile range of the TLAM should 
be fielded. An affordable, land attack weapon in the 400-500 mile range should be 
studied and war-gamed, and it should be compatible with existing launching systems. 

As my colleague Bryan Clark has written, surface forces actually hunting down and 
killing submarines may not be as efficient as using surface forces to ward off 
submarines from lucrative, high value targets. The Surface Force currently fields the 
sophisticated AN/SQR-89A(V)15 Anti-Submarine Warfare processing system with the 
Multi-Function Towed Array (MFTA), a combination that provides detection and 
tracking of modern, quiet submarines scores of miles from the ship. The submarine 
may however, be aware of the ship's presence, and submarines are increasingly fitted 
with long range anti-ship cruise missiles. The surface force should consider developing 



a standoff weapon that can be fired at the extended detection ranges offered by its 
sensitive sonar systems. This weapon, perhaps a rocket assisted depth bomb or even a 
rocket assisted torpedo, would almost instantaneously put the adversary submarine on 
the defensive, rather than giving it time to get off its own attack on the U.S. surface ship. 

A more disaggregated Surface Force operating in a wartime enviromnent against a 
near-peer will almost certainly operate in a satellite and network denied environment, 
which would likely cut these units off from the ISR provided by the air wing, land- 
based UAV's and the P-8. The Surface Force must develop the capability to launch and 
recover Medium Altitude Long Endurance UAV's to provide organic Surface Action 
Group ISR, communications relay, and aerial layer networking in the absence of larger 
warfighting networks. 

Finally, the Navy must actively experiment and war-game in order to evaluate the 
effectiveness and logistical sustainability of a more disaggregated force. The current 
aggregated force is only tenuously supported by the Navy's logistics ship inventory, 
and any large scale disaggregation will stress this under-resourced but critical 


A more powerful, numerous, and disaggregated surface force fielding new and 
improved weapons and sensors will increase the targeting complexity of potential 
adversaries, dilute their available ISR assets, and diminish their constructive attack 
density against any single target. Such a move by the Navy would — on a relatively 
economical basis — extend surface force effectiveness across the span of naval functions, 
from presence, to deterrence, to warfighting. 

Thank you. 



Bryan G. McGrath 

CDR USN (ret.) 

Cleared: TS/S! 


Managing Director, The FerryBridge Group LLC (2013-Present) 

• Founder of an independent consultancy focusing on National Security issues, Maritime Strategy, 
and Defense Technology development. 

Adjunct Faculty, Naval War College (2014-Present) 

• Adjunct Professor of Joint Maritime Studies 

Director of Consulting, Studies and Analysis, Delex Systems, Inc, Herndon, VA (2009-2013) 

• Founding Director of a consultancy focusing on Naval and National Security issues 
Manager, Strategic Planning, Noithrop Grumman Marine Systems, Washington, DC (2008-9) 

• Primary Strategic Planner for a $500M line of business in commercial energy and defense. 
Director, Navy Strategic Actions Group. Washington DC (2006-8) 

• Senior Advisor to the uniformed leader of the US Navy (and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff); 
responsible for formulating and implementing global strategy for the US Navy 

Commanding Officer, USSBULKELEY. Norfolk, VA (2004-2006) 

• CEO level position directing the activities of a $l billion warship and crew of 320 

• Air and Missile Defense Commander for Commander. [WOJIMA Expeditkmary Strike Group 
Chief of Interoperability, Joint Staff, Washington DC (2001-2004) 

• Director level position coordinating missile defense oriented acquisition programs of the US 
Armed Services 

Executive Officer, USS PRINCETON. San Diego, CA (1999-2001) 

• COO level position managing the activities of a $l billion warship and crew of 410 
Special Assistant to the Chief of Naval Operations. Washington DC (1997-1999) 

• Director level position as Communications Director and Speechwriter to the uniformed leader of 
the US Navy (and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff) 

Junior Officer Naval Service ( 1 987 - 1 997) 


Chief Navy Strategist (2006/7) 

• Key Contribution. Led the Washington based team of USN, USMC, and USCG officers who 
developed the nation’s current Maritime Strategy “A Cooperative Strategy for 2C‘ Century 
Seapower”, and served as its primary author. 

• Managing Complexity. Led a team of nearly 200 senior military officers, academics, and 
government officials in developing the United States Maritime Strategy, the plan for investing 
nearly $120 billion dollars annually for the next ten years. 

o Hand-picked by Navy leadership to manage this first comprehensive strategy 
development effort in 20 years. 

• Public Speaker. Created and executed an extensive national advocacy and outreach program in 
support of the development of the National Maritime Strategy, including symposia, newspaper 
editorials, targeted media, and Congressional liaison. 

• Foresight. Coordinated an in-depth alternative futures and strategic environment assessment 
process to support the development of the Maritime Strategy, creating a visionary look at the 
major trends in globalization, trade, finance, technology and labor now used as the standard for 
Department of Defense planning. 


Command at Sea (2004-2006) 

• Proven Leader. Received the 2006 “Zumwalt Award for Inspirational Leadership” from the 
Surface Navy Association. 

• Efficient. In command of USS BULKELEY, managed over $20 million in resources with 
recognition for operating fiscal efficiency. Earned 2006 USS ARIZONA Trophy for “most combat 
ready ship” in the Navy 

• Operational. Served as the Air and Missile Defense Commander for the IWO JIMA 
Expeditionary Strike Group, responsible for the seamless integration of the Strike Group into 
existing Joint Air Defense Networks and the creation of such networks w-here none previously 

• Organizational Improvement. Re-organized the management team in USS BULKELEY to 
reflect functional areas related to combat operations, rather than historic administrative alignment. 
This innovation created increased communication among the stake-holders and ultimately 
contributed to the ship’s recognition as the most combat ready ship in the Navy. 

• Process Improvement. Reduced maintenance and repair costs in USS BULKELEY by 
implementing an in-depth analysis of maintenance request procedures, resulting in 1 0% faster 
turn-around on high priority repairs witli 50% fewer requests rejected for errors. Maintenance 
costs were maintained at 80% of the class average throughout command tenure. 

Joint Staff Officer (2001-2004) 

• International Expertise. Experience working with European, Middle Eastern, Asian and Latin 
American partners. Served as the primary Joint Staff representative to the international data link 
community, with deep expertise in Link 16, CEC and other missile defense oriented information 
and weapon systems. 

o Dynamic leadership and emphasis on personal excellence resulted in a 20% increase in 
retention of key Sailors and a 75% increase in personnel promotion rates. 

• Skilled Negotiator, Excelled as primary agent of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for oversight of 
weapon system interoperability. Aided defense acquisition process by coordinating 25 separate 
programs (totaling over $15 billion) in implementing higher levels of Joint interoperability, 
resulting in greater combat efficiency at lower total cost to the taxpayer. 


MA, Political Science, The Catholic University of America, 1999 
BA, History, University of Virginia, 1987 

Navy Fellow, Massachusetts institute of Technology Foreign Policy Seminar XXI, 2007 
Graduate, Naval War College, 1999 (JPME Phase I) 

JPME Phase II (2006) 


Adjunct Fellow, Hudson Institute and Assistant Director of the Hudson Center for American Seapower 

Navy Policy Team Lead, Romney for President (201 1-2012) 



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